Greetings Friends! Welcome to the year 2022! I confess that my blog title may seem melodramatic and overdone, but will become self-explanatory subsequently. Entering the New Year we look back over the past one with profound but deliberative reflection. It was a trying year in every way to be sure. Humanity continues to grapple with a global Covid-19 pandemic that is sweeping the earth. As of this writing, the W.H.O. (World Health Organization) has reported a death toll of approximately 5.5 million lives from the dreaded disease, with 284 million confirmed cases in 222 countries and territories and counting. (https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/coronavirus-death-toll/)
Aside from the worldwide pandemic, humanity had many other equally broad but urgent issues to deal with such as global warming, climate change and loss of biodiversity, population growth, rising food security and malnutrition, decline in natural resource particularly clean water, the refugee crisis, chemical pollution, eradicating different forms of poverty, weapons of mass destruction, the advent of powerful and uncontrolled new technology, political and national and global failure to understand and act preventatively on these risks. I could go on and on, but suffice to touch upon the few pressing ones outlined above.
In this post I would like to draw a parallel between what humanity is undergoing with these urgent issues to the subject of ‘hell.’ What has ‘hell’ to do with it, or with anything for that matter, you may ask. Fair enough, bear with me and I will make the connection obvious enough. The subject of ‘hell’ has been debated over the centuries by philosophers, theologians, and experts on the subject. The aim of this post is not to add to that debate, or to discuss the pros and cons of the different historical perspectives on the topic, vital and volatile as they may be, to the different proponents on the subject. The aim of this post is to take a view of ‘hell’ from the lens of the myriads of pressing issues humanity faces, our moral obligation to them, and how the meaning of ‘hell’ that mankind is experiencing through the many issues humanity is facing today, the here and now, rather than today’s popular meaning of ‘hell’ as a fiery place of suffering in the afterlife, or proponents of adversarial perspectives on the matter.
What I am about to share is scripturally-based, and for all intents and purposes, may illuminate the basis of the foundational understanding of the subject of ‘hell’ itself. For without a doubt the very basis of the concept of ‘hell’ has always had its beginning with a mighty angelic being named Lucifer who metamorphose into Satan because of his revolt against his Creator God. And that is where we begin with my post. Angels are personal spirit beings who have intelligence, emotions, and self-will. (Jude 6) They are ministering spirits sent to serve those who are to inherit salvation. (Heb.1:14)
(However, before I get into my post, you may be interested in reading about the subject of hell from a historical perspective, you can read an article with a balanced view at this site: https://www.gci.org/articles/the-battle-over-hell/).
Now, to get to my post. In Ezekiel 28:11-19 God gave us a view of ‘hell fire.’ You can say this is the birth place on the subject. The context of this phrase was taken from the passage leading up to Lucifer’s (an angelic being) reasons for his revolt against God and His sovereignty as Creator and eternal Sustainer of life, both spiritual and physical. God actually created a powerful, intelligent, and beautiful angelic being, named Lucifer. He was a mighty angel of God. He was created with exceptional wisdom and as such was called the “Shining Star of the Dawn” (Isa.14:12).
In Ezekiel 28, V.18, we read the following, where the passage addresses the King of Tyre, “You defiled your sanctuaries with your many sins and your dishonest trade. So, I brought fire out from within you, and it consumed you.” I emphasize the words, “I brought fire out from within you, and it consumed you.” This is the first mention of a ‘consuming fire’ as it relates to Satan, the fallen angelic being. Although the text was addressed to the King of Tyre, from the descriptions given, it is obvious that no human is addressed. This is speaking of Lucifer as the principal recipient and beneficiary of the message.
Through the Bible, Lucifer or Satan, usually presents himself as speaking through another person, in this case, the King of Tyre. In another instance which we will read, he spoke through the King of Babylon. In the Garden of Eden, he spoke to Adam and Eve through a serpent. Today, he speaks to us “as an angel of light,” but in fact he is the embodiment of darkness. (2 Cor.11:14; Col.1:13) Paul tells us about Satan’s dark world, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Eph.6:12; Act.26:18).
Something had occurred that changed Lucifer. Something happened so he ceased to be the “Shining Star of the Dawn.” Something drastic took a complete wrong turn which metamorphosed him into God’s adversary. The passage explains, “You (Lucifer) were blameless in all you did from the day you were created until the day evil was found in you … and you sinned” (Ezek.28:15). The passage actually quotes Lucifer’s conceited aims, “Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So, I threw you to the earth” (Ezek.28:17).
Lucifer, through his pride, beauty, wisdom, and splendor, allowed his pride to get away and get the better of him. All the spectacularly magnificent things created in him by God led him to irrational pride, and this brought about his rebellion and downfall. God told him, “You sinned. So, I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, guardian cherub” (Ezek.28:16).
In expelling Lucifer from God’s holy presence because of his revolt, God changed him in spirit and he metamorphosed into Satan the Devil, God’s adversary. (1 Pet.5:8) In Revelation, he is called the “accuser of our brethren” (Rev.12:10). For all God’s people he is now our adversary and accuser before God. Now, we see that Satan was actually the influencer and mover behind the King of Tyre in his rule and domain in history. (Read Ezek.28:1-10).
In another passage in Isaiah, it records the actual revolt and rebellion of Lucifer. In that instance, Satan (formerly Lucifer) spoke through the King of Babylon. Lucifer’s rebellion and treasonous act against God is recorded in this way,
“How you have fallen from heaven, morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the North. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High” (Isaiah 14:12-14).
Take note of Lucifer’s repeated “I will’s” in the above passage. He could accept God as the supreme Creator, or he could choose to be god unto himself. But he chose to be a god blinded by his absurd desire to be Creator and revolt against Almighty God. His repeated “I will’s” show that he chose to defy God and declared himself to be a god and be creator. Now let us read the passage from Ezekiel, which I quoted partly earlier, but this gives a parallel account of the fall of Lucifer:
“You were in Eden, the garden of God. … I ordained and anointed you as the mighty angelic guardian. “You had access to the holy mountain of God and walked among the stones of fire. “You were blameless in all you did from the day you were created until the day evil was found in you. … and you sinned. “I banished you in disgrace from the mountain of God. “I expelled you, O mighty guardian, from your place among the stones of fire. “Your heart was filled with pride because of all your beauty. Your wisdom was corrupted by your love of splendor. “So I threw you to the ground “By your many sins and dishonest trade you have desecrated your sanctuaries. “So I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you, “And I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the sight of all who were watching. “All the nations who knew you are appalled at you;you have come to a horrible end and will be no more’” (Ezekiel 28:13-19).
From the above, you will have noticed that I have quoted biblical texts about Lucifer’s revolt and subsequent metamorphosing into the evil one, Satan. I did that to show that ‘hell’ or ‘hell fire’ was first uttered against the fallen angel, Lucifer, for his revolt against God, and God said, “So I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you” (Ezek.28:18). Paul affirms as to the source of this ‘consuming fire’ which is reserved for those who are opposed to God’s sovereignty over all of creation, “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our “God is a consuming fire” (Heb.12:28-29)
Moses had warned the people of Israel before entering the Promised Land about observing God’s commands and not deviate from them so that they will prosper and be blessed in the land they will possess. (Deut.4:1-2, 9, 25-26) For if they rebelled and disobeyed God they will face hardship, suffering, and failure, “for the Lord your God is a consuming fire” (Deut.4:24). The ‘consuming fire’ will come as consequence of their actions against God (Love), as it did with Lucifer. Subsequently, many years and equally many kings and rulers, Israel was carried away as a slave nation again for their revolt against God their Maker.
Yes, Lucifer (Satan) was warned of a ‘consuming fire’ from within for revolting against the Creator, just as ancient Israel was warned. Jerusalem was burnt to the ground by the Babylonians more than 2600 years ago. (https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4739152/The-Babylonians-DID-burn-Jerusalem.html; also Jer.52:12-14) Without a doubt, a ‘consuming fire’ did destroy the kings of Tyre and Babylon and their physical empire and dominion are a matter of historical records. This is what the end of any human kingdom or dominion looks like that become unwitting partners of Satan’s unseen but dark spiritual dominion. They ended up in utter ruin. The birth of the concept of hell fire had always begun with the rebellion of Lucifer and his angelic beings. (Rev.12:4) In other words, ‘hell’ could not exist without Satan.
We see in the beginning of Ezekiel’s passage that Lucifer dwelt in Eden as did Adam and Eve, mankind’s first parents. (Gen.2:8, 15) Our first parents must have observed the splendor and wisdom God placed in Lucifer, perhaps unaware of his corruption by rebellion, and his masquerade of hiding behind the appearance of an ‘angel of light’ in the form of a serpent that was known for its craftiness and cunning. (2 Cor.11:14; Gen.3:1-4) Eve’s weakness was she envied Lucifer’s (now Satan’s corrupt) wisdom. Eve wanted what Lucifer (Satan) had, and he lied about the forbidden fruit as “desirable for gaining wisdom so she took some and ate it.” (Gen.3:6). She was deceived into thinking the forbidden fruit was her answer in her search for wisdom. Eve shared Satan’s exchange with Adam, and he consentingly and rather gullibly ate the forbidden fruit.
Through Adam and Eve, all humanity was bequeathed the ‘fallen Adamic humanity.’ A humanity that has lost its way because it followed Satan into his domain of darkness. (Col.1:13; Eph.6:12) They had forsaken the Creator’s way of Love they were created to become. (Gen.1:26-27; 1 John 4:16) This way of Love was depicted in our parents through the Tree of Life, which they had partaken of and related with God in Love. (Gen.2:9; 3:24)
Let us be cognizant of this reality that the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was not ‘evil’ or ‘sinful’ of itself. It was planted by God in Eden, Adam and Eve’s garden home. (Gen.2:15) It was God’s gift to teach our parents knowledge of good from evil. Recall, they were created adults, they were never babies, had no childhood, they never grew up as teens or young grownups. The tree of life, also planted by God, taught them God’s Love and spiritual principles and promises. One was human and the other divine.
However, for that brief period of time God tested them. (Psa.66:10; Gen.22:1; Deut.8:2) They were forbidden to go near the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, let alone touch it. (Gen.3:3) God tested them to see if they will rely upon their knowledge acquired from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil whereby human wisdom is apprehended, or upon God’s sovereign Word (Truth/Love) from the tree of life. They were not restricted in any way from eating from it, or any other tree in the Garden, with the exception of one. (Gen.2:16-17) It was a matter of choice, it was a matter of freedom. And we know how Satan exploited the situation and deceived our first parents.
God blesses us with the gift of freedom (free will), as such He tests us as He will do all His human children, beginning with Adam and Eve. But this is His promise, “No temptation (test) has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted (tested) beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted (test), He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Cor.10:13; Deut.8:5). God tests his human children out of His great Love for them. (Heb.12:6; Prov.3:11-12; Psa.94:12) This is the the surrendered live we are given the privilege of living in Christ. (1 John 4:16)
Today, we have our educational system which dessiminate and teach us all kinds of knowledge in whatever field of discipline we desire to pursue. Then, there is God’s eternal truth founded upon His sovereign Love and will. Today, we have access to knowledge as our first parents had access to the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The question is, do we make gods of our know-hows, skills, talents, and human wisdom and intelligence, as Lucifer did? Do we allow human pride to dominate us to the extent that we imagine we can live autonomously from our Creator? That we do not need God or His Love in our lives? Or that we overlook and even ignore the most important knowledge humans can have and treasure in respect to our Maker’s purpose for creating humanity in the first place? (Gen.1:26-27; Eph.4:24; Col.3:10-15; 1 John 4:16) We have a choice of living the autonomous life from God or the surrendered life in His Love. (1 John 4:16)
When the second Adam (Jesus) came on the scene in God’s time, He taught us the right response to Satan’s temptation about intellect, success, pride, and autonomy. He repulsed and rejected Satan’s deceptive mantras, declaring sternly, “It is written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test’” (Matt.4:7). An overpowering phrase which sums up God’s sovereignty that’s unanimous and unopposed and no gainsayers may contend nor contest. For no one living may take liberty to tempt God. (Deut.6:16; Psa.78:18) God’s Love and character is flawless beyond reproach, and to sow doubt by baiting is abhorrent and anathema to Him. (1 John 4:8) James tell us, “For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He tempt anyone” (Jam.1:13). God tests His human children, He never tempts them. (Heb.12:6) There is a difference between ‘test’ and ‘tempt.’ God ‘test’ his children out of His Love; the devil ‘tempts’ humans in order to lead them to rebellion, sin, and destruction. (1 Pet.5:8) We can live the life of autonomy and rebellion to the Creator, or we can live the surrendered life in Christ.
The manner in which Jesus responds to Satan ought always to be our response when Satan tempts humans to defy God’s truth for human knowledge or any form of pride-filled autonomy. By stating, “It is written…” Jesus taught us to choose God’s revelation by virture of His Loving principles and sure promises over autonomy from God through pride and self aggrandizement. And therein lies the crux of all human dilemma and mankind’s ills and troubles, and by extension having to experience the identical ‘consuming fire’ of the devil, or live in the Love and harmony of the Creator and “inherit all things” with Christ in God’s divine edict. (Rev.21:7) Jesus has given the template of how to live the surrendered life to God’s Love. As John reflects on this, saying, “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by Himself; He can do only what He sees His Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does” (John 5:19; Matt. 26:39). (Read my Blog about the Four Temptations of Jesus at: http://bulamanriver.net/20216)
Lucifer had freewill with which he could individually make choices. So did Adam and Eve and humanity descended from them. Freedom was God’s gift, and it came with the responsibility to show care and used for good (Love). (Gal.5:22; Psa.23:6) Paul said this about utilizung God’s Love and our Freedoms, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Eph.2:10). Lucifer could only come to the conclusion that God is Love and He was his omnipotent Creator by faith – the same for Adam and Eve and all humanity today.
Paul said, “As it is written: “The righteous will live by faith” (Rom.1:17; Hab.2:4) Faith is the lifeblood of our spirit life, like blood is to the human body. The Bible says the foundation of human existence is in the blood, likewise so is faith to spiritual life. (Lev.17:11) The Bible says pointedly, “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him” (Heb.11:6).
So, through faith Lucifer was given the freedom of choice and also for all humanity. Lucifer chose he would be god unto himself, so did our first parents after they followed him in their disobedience and rebellion. He had faith in himself through his revolt and sin. (read about the Living Faith of Jesus at: http://bulamanriver.net/21946) Today we have many people who don’t believe in God or in spiritual matters, and condemn those who do as showing ‘blind’ faith. They fail to realize that what they accuse others of, they themselves do likewise. There is no difference. They have faith in what they espouse apart from God’s revelation for humanity through his Word (Holy Bible), which we embrace. Their masquerade is known in the Bible as hypocrisy. (Luk.6:42; Rom.2:1, 5; Rom.10:3; Jam.2:19, 23). So, they live by their brand of human faith (autonomy from God), as we live by ours through divine revelation through Christ, the living Word. (John 1:1, 14) That is the unmistakeable difference.
So, because of his revolt against his Creator, Lucifer was no longer the “Shining One.” He was blinded by the splendor God created him and became. He doubted God and His supremacy in all creation and the universe. Now Satan’s dominion is ‘darkness.’ (Col.1:13) He is called the ‘accuser.’ (Rev.12:10) He is the devil, which means ‘adversary.’ (1 Pet.5:8, ESV)
Now, let us quickly revisit the message of the King of Tyre, and by extension principally to Satan in the passage in Ezekiel 28:18. We read that because of Lucifer’s sin of having faith in his revolt against God and be a god unto himseld, God has brought a fire from within him (Satan) to consume him, “You defiled your sanctuaries with your many sins and your dishonest trade. So, I brought fire out from within you, and it consumed you.” The King of Tyre is a type of fallen humanity resulting from Adam’s fall to sin in Eden and followed Satan down his destructive path.
This passage is speaking to both the physical King of Tyre, upon whom the prophecy was fulfilled who has long since passed and disappeared from history. But the prophecy was uttered upon Satan as well, but with a ‘consuming fire’ that is not physical for the devil is a fallen angelic being. The physical fire upon Tyre had done its work and is now recorded in the annals of history. But not so spiritual fire, which is perpetual and still ‘consuming.’
What is this ‘consuming fire’ spoken of here? The ‘consuming fire’ has to do with the many sins and dishonest trade. This is referring to the reign of physical King of Tyre, but also with Satan. With Lucifer (Satan) it refers primarily to his sin of rebellion and his deception of humanity, we read in Isaiah, “You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the North. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” And his “many other sins” emanating from his revolt against God, and all that his Creator stood for.
Everything else Satan may have influenced the Kings of Tyre and Babylon to do in their reign was peripheral to his revolt against his Creator. For Satan, because he is a fallen spirit angelic being, his revolting idea lives on because it is an unfulfilled desire of Satan, who possesses unending spirit life in his fallen angelic being. A discontented, frustrated, failed, and unhappy life is of itself a ‘consuming fire.’ And fallen mankind is no different, as we’ll see.
We have seen what this ‘consuming fire’ means to Satan, however, since the King of Tyre represents humanity, we also have a fire burning from within us on account of Adam’s fall at the hands of Satan. (Rom.5:12; Gen.3:1-6) Human beings are not composed of spirit as angelic beings like Lucifer (Satan). Humans are mortal and subject to emaciation and death. Even though humanity is physical and has a limited lifespan, he continues to exist in perpetuity through human procreation and posterity, and more importantly through the human spirit (mind). Thereby, in a manner of speaking, through the human mind we have an infinite (physical) lineage and thereby inherit the ‘consuming fire’ of Satan from within us as well. Through the fallen mind we perpetuate the ‘consuming fire.’
What is that fire? The ‘consuming fire’ are all the issues mankind is faced with which we have covered anecdotally at the beginning of this post, and even more so as to the human sin-condition inherited through rebellion. The issues and problems mankind experienced have been sown in rebellion, incubated in sin, and passed down generationally while draped in the various human issues and problems at different epochs of human history down to our day. Whatever they were, they represent humanity’s ‘consuming fire.’ What humanity has done through the ages since Adam were established and done through the power of and within the dark domain of Satan, the devil, the ruler and god of this fallen world.
Paul said this, “The god of this age (Satan) has blinded the minds of unbelievers so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” (2 Cor.4:4, italics mine; also, Act 26:18). By forsaking the divine Love of God through His Spirit, they have instead turned-on the ‘consuming fire’ of rebellion and sin from within the humanity that is gripping and haunting us.
Lucifer chose to become autonomous from God instead of the surrendered life of God’s Love, and continues to defy God to this day. His revolt changed him and he became Satan the devil (the ‘accuser’ and ‘adversary’). The heart of the test of Adam’s freewill was the same as that of Lucifer; it was just draped with a different attire. They both chose to be a god to themselves. This was a revolt against the Creator to see who will be God. The same freedom of choice afforded to both Lucifer and Adam, humanity faces today in the world we live where Satan tempts humans like he has from the start in Eden. So, because Satan is a spirit being in his fallen angelic being, his sin lives on, and his revolting sin lives on in him like an unquenchable and ‘consuming fire.’ God tells us that He is the “consuming fire” that destroy all evil. (Heb.12:29; Exo15:7)
As humans, we can choose to think, desire, and act against God’s Loving will. When that happens, which humans do in Satan’s world, it turns into and remain a ‘consuming fire’ in our hearts because everything which are done contrary and in revolt to God’s eternal truth in His Love will never be fulfilled. Anything which stands up to and against God’s (Love’s) will remain unfulfilled and destroyed in the ‘consuming fire.’ (Heb.12:29; Psa.97:3; Isa. 33:14)
Now, the King of Tyre was in actuality typifying fallen humanity. This connection is vital to understand and keep in mind. Paul said this about the Holy Scriptures, “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope” (Rom.15:4). Humanity remains a fallen human species from Adam’s sin in Eden. In the same manner Satan’s sin and revolting spirit who was banished from God’s presence remains a ‘consuming fire,’ the same rebellious spirit lives on in the fallen human mind.
The human mind was created to enable humans learn to emulate God’s likeness, that is, to give humans the ability to have a relationship of Love with God and our fellow humans. (Gen.1:26-27; 1 John 4:7-12; Mar.12:30-31) John said, “Dear friends, since God so Loved us, we also ought to Love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we Love one another, God lives in us and His Love is made complete in us” (1 John 11-12). However, being his old spiritual revolting fallen angelic being that he is, Satan led mankind through Adam to follow his rebellious ways. So we read Paul, saying this, “Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other Person obeyed God (Jesus Christ), many will be made righteous” (Rom.5:19, NLT).
We don’t seem to have answers for all the ills facing humanity today. Humanity is faced with issues that are global in nature and burns like a fire that is consuming us in its destructive path. We cannot resolve them even if we wanted to. We are chained in the devil’s prison for we have followed his revolting ways of sin. Satan’s strategy has always been to enlist mankind to join him – by tempting them to succumb to the same choice that he made – to blind them to love themselves and become autonomous from God, and defy the Creator, and suffer the consequences of rebellion: “fire coming out from within you, that consume you” (Ezek.28:18). Most human conflicts and warfare, including the recent first and second World Wars were mankind witnessing and experiencing the ‘consuming fire’ of Satan blazing and smoldering from within humanity. Or, we can live the miraculous life through the surrendered mindset to God’s Love and grace.
Since Adam’s fall, he has succeeded in propping himself as a god to fallen humanity, albeit hiding behind idols we treasure as we saw in the case of the ancient kings of the empires of Tyre and Babylon, and even a crafty serpent to our first parents. (Gen.3:1) He started with Adam and Eve and succeeded, and that is how humanity was bequeathed with the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ where we are imprisoned in the sin-condition and rebellion of the evil one to this day. It is worth repeating Paul’s summation of the human condition, and ultimate salvation, “Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other Person (Jesus) obeyed God, many will be made righteous” (Rom.5:19, NLT).
What must humanity do? After the fall of Adam, God promised to send His Son, the second Adam, to enter and take our humanity unto Himself and become our Savior. Yes, Jesus Christ, the second Person of the trinitarian Godhead, was sent by the Father to save us from the sin-condition humans were consigned and imprisoned in by Satan. (Gen.3:15; Isa.7:14; John 3:16-17; 1 Cor.15:45; Col.1:27; Eph.1:7; 18-23). The message of the Gospel from God is humanity must be reborn into a new species of human beings – from the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ of Adam held under Satan’s sway, to the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus Christ, empowered in God’s Spirit and Love. (Rom.5:12; 5:1, 15; 5:5)
What do I mean by the terms ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ (of Adam), and the ‘Redeemed Immanuel humanity’ (of Jesus Christ)? After the fall of Adam in Eden, God uttered a prophetic statement which ushered in a new beginning for mankind unlike any seen or experienced in human history which would define human destiny.
God said to Satan who had precipitated the fall of Adam and Eve through deception and pretense, “So the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this (deceived Eve to disobey and eat the forbidden fruit), I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; He will crush your head, and you will strike his heel” (Gen.3:14, 15, italics my emphasis). The Message Bible renders this verse as follows, “I’m declaring war between you and the woman, between your offspring and hers. He’ll wound your head, you’ll wound his heel.”
This is the first prophecy of the coming of Christ, the Messiah and Savior. Not only is this a prophecy of His birth, but it is a prophecy of His work. By saying, “He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel,” God is predicting the defeat of Satan by the coming of Christ, our Redeemer. God is drawing the battle lines between Himself and Satan. God draws a distinction between “your seed” (Satan’s seed) which is the ‘fallen Adamic humanity,’ and “her Seed” (Jesus) refers to the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ – the incarnation of Christ. (You may read my post on the topic of Incarnation at: http://bulamanriver.net/18857)
The famed theologian Thomas F. Torrance said, “Everything would be emptied of evangelical and saving import if Jesus Christ were not fully, completely, entirely man, as well as God” (The Trinitarian Faith, Pg.146). Yes, Jesus was fully God and fully human, a completely new human to appear upon earth. He was the Immanuel or “God with us” human being. (Matt.1:23).
From the above, we see there are only two forms of humans created in God’s likeness that has ever existed and walked upon this earth. (Gen.1:26-27; Luk.1:26-31; 1 Cor.15:45) Both originate from the Creator. We are all God’s creation through the first Adam and the second Adam, Jesus. Paul said, “The Scriptures tell us, “The first man, Adam, became a living person. But the last Adam—that is, Christ—is a life-giving Spirit” (1 Cor.15:45; Act.17:28;)
The first Adam was created from the dust of the earth, perfect and sinless until his fall at the hands of the devil. (Gen.3:1-24) The second Adam resulted from the incarnation of Jesus Christ when God the Father gave us His Son as Savior. The Gospel of Matthew recites the prophecy of Isaiah, “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”)” Matthew adds, “She will give birth to a son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins” (Matt.1:23, 21; Isa.7:14)
Through the first Adam’s sin, mankind was consigned to a life of spiritual imprisonment under the rebellious sin-condition of the devil. Humanity was cut off from access to God and His Spirit (Tree of Life) because of sin. (Gen.3:24) Through Adam’s fall the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ came to be which is fashioned in the devil’s likeness. Then there is the second new humanity Jesus brought from God the Father. God used the prophet Isaiah to announce His coming in the beautiful prophecy, “Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:22-23, KJV). Thus, the new humanity of Jesus is referred to the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ fashioned after Jesus’ image. (1 Cor.15:45; Rom.8:29)
So, Jesus was the second human creation after Adam, but being fully human and fully God, or “Immanuel” meaning, “God with us.” (Isa7:14; Matt.1:23; 1 Cor.15:45) All humanity descended from the first Adam, and now God calls upon humans to adopt the gift of His Son’s ‘Immanuel (God with us) humanity’ through whom eternal life is conferred upon humanity. (John 3:16-17) Therefore, the title “Immanuel” denotes the difference between Jesus’ new redeemed humanity and Adam’s fallen corrupt and sin-conditioned humanity.
Through Jesus’ physical mother, Mary, God assimilated Himself with and in mankind through His Son, and conversely Christ forever joins humans with God forever, through the ‘Immanuel’ (‘God with us’ human). However, there is a proviso, from our human/mortal focal point, this process of exchanged life (rebirth/new birth) cannot be done arbitrarily. A person has to make a freewill choice, he/she has to choose for herself/himself. Individually and separately, a person has to make a choice of wanting to become part of the new human species God is preparing for His eternal Kingdom – the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus. Peter made this abundantly clear on the Day of Pentecost when God sent His Spirit, “Brothers, what shall we do?” Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Act.2:37-38). ‘Repent’ symbolize change, and ‘baptize’ is metaphor for rebirth.
Paul wrote to Timothy and said, “He (God the Father) has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of His own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel” (2 Tim.1:9-10).
What we have read above from Paul’s words is God’s call upon humans to live in true Freedom in His Son’s ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ through Jesus’ role as Savior and eternal Mediator. Freedom (free will) is divine and part of God’s eternal nature. Freedom is the flip side of God’s Love nature. God is not Love without Freedom, nor is He Freedom without Love. John tells us, “God is Love.” (1 John 4:8). To the Galatians, Paul said, “It is for Freedom that Christ has set you Free” (Gal.5:1). You cannot have Love without Freedom, nor Freedom without Love – they are one and the same quality within the one divine nature of God. God is Free, the embodiment of it, and wants nothing less for His saved children. To exist without sin in holiness is to live in true Freedom. (Gal.5:1; John 8:32) John’s Gospel tell us this, “So if the Son sets you Free, you will be Free indeed” (John 8:36, emphasis mine).
The Bible quotes God as saying, “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts…My word that goes out from My mouth: It will not return to Me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace” (Isa.55:8-9, 11-12). God inherently expresses genuine Freedom through the celestial Love which opens pathways in the mindscape of thoughts, concepts, and perceptions rooted in the divine, which is unknown and beyond the capacity of our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ to comprehend, much less live by.
In this physical life we define human freedoms in many ways like economic and financial freedoms, emotional freedom, women’s rights, political freedom, civil liberties, freedom from all forms of tyranny, fundamental rights, freedom of speech, religion, and assembly, etc. There is only one true Freedom which brings genuine capacity and wholeness to the human persona which is modelled in Christ’s likeness. (Rom.8:29; John 8:36). In a nutshell, humanity’s destiny is to become a species in the Creator God’s likeness and live in true Freedom. (Gen.1:26-27; Gal.5:1; John 8:36)
But how does a person Freely choose God’s Love, and become children of the divine? Jesus explains how a human being is given a rebirth into the new human species…the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus. Jesus said, “Unless you are born again (given/anointed in spiritual rebirth), you cannot see the Kingdom of God” (John 3:3, NLT, brackets my emphasis). To be born again is to experience the new birth in the power of the Holy Spirit. The ritual of ‘baptism’ is the outward physical representation of this new rebirth taking place inwardly…in the heart and mind of saved humans. (read.. Rom.6:3-7).
Jesus’ departing commission to His disciples was, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matt.28:18-19). Yes, Jesus emphasized the importance of this new birth humans must undergo through baptism, and clearly gave it to His disciples as a prime mission.
Listen, Jesus goes on to say, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life. So don’t be surprised when I say, ‘You must be born again” (John 3:5-7). Paul said, Jesus is the second Adam, “The first man Adam became a living being. But the last Adam, that is Christ – is a life-giving Spirit” (1 Cor.15:45, NLT).
When we receive Jesus as personal Savior, we receive Him in His resurrected form and stature through the life-giving Holy Spirit. Thereby, Paul said this about the believer’s reality in Christ, “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus” (Eph.2:6). Paul added, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?” (1 Cor.3:16). Yes, saved humanity through Jesus in the Spirit’s power have been made to appear before the Almighty’s very Seat of Mercy to humbly offer our worship, gratitude, petitions, and praise. (Heb.4:14-16; Col.1:27) Paul said, “So then, it does not depend on man’s desire or effort, but on God’s mercy” (Rom.9:16).
Jesus said this about the Spirit’s activity in humans, “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on His own; He will speak only what He hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify Me because it is from Me that He will receive what He will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is Mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from Me what He will make known to you” (John 16:13-15). So, we see from Jesus’ words how the Tri-Personal God (Trinity) is at work in human life through the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit! (Matt.28:18-19)
From the above account of the new birth humans can receive (freely and voluntarily), we see that through Jesus’ physical mother, Mary, God assimilated Himself in mankind through His Son, and conversely Christ forever joins mankind to God, and ultimately for eternity when He glorified His (and our) humanity in His (Christ’s) own resurrection from death to immortal life.
By assimilating Himself and becoming Immanuel (human/divine – “God with us”), Jesus subjected Himself to all the power and sway of our corrupt sinful nature while remaining perfect and sinless. (Heb.2:14; Rom.8:3-4) Hence, through His ‘new Immanuel humanity’ He redeemed mankind from the sin-condition of the devil by living the perfect life and finally dying as our sinless sacrifice upon His cross. Paul said, “He (Jesus) canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross” (Col.2:14). Further Paul affirms, “God made Him (Jesus) who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God” (1 Cor.5:21). All this make up a life of faith in the Creator God’s plan of rescuing humanity through and in His unfathomable Love.
What must happen to our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’? Paul answers emphatically, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me” (Gal.2:20, KJB). By saying, “I am crucified with Christ:” Paul explains what happened to our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ – Jesus took it to Calvary and crucified it upon His cross once for all, so we can be redeemed from the burden of its curse. Paul affirmed the removal of the curse telling the Romans, “We know that our old self (fallen Adamic humanity) was crucified with Him so that the body of sin might be rendered powerless, that we should no longer be slaves to sin” (Rom.6:6, italics my emphasis).
As Paul continues saying, “nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me,” he is speaking of Christ our Mediator living in us through His resurrected life in the Spirit’s power, His ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ This verse (Gal.2:20) speaks eloquently of the process of the spiritual rebirth. Then Paul goes on, “And the life I now live in the body, I live by the faith of the Son of God,” he explains that the conviction by which you and I live from here on is empowered by Jesus’ very Personal faith (not our limited human faith) in the power of the Spirit.
(This verse in Galatians 2:20 has properly translated the phrase, “the faith of Jesus” taken from the King James Version, not “faith in Jesus” like other modern versions. When the preposition “of” is used, it speaks in the possessive case of Jesus’ own Personal faith external from us; and when “in” is used (incorrectly) it speaks of the weakness of the internal ‘human faith’ in Jesus, which is inadequate and unworkable in the spiritual realm. We cannot have “faith in Jesus” without the “faith of Jesus.” You may want to read my blog about faith at: http://bulamanriver.net/21946)
Paul reciting an Old Testament passage says this about faith, “But my righteous one will live by faith. And I take no pleasure in the one who shrinks back” (Heb.10:38). Together with Paul’s assertion in Galatians 2:20, we understand that when faith is spoken of it refers to Jesus’ spiritual and powerful living faith. Let us not shrink back from receiving and relying upon Jesus’ living, Personal, faith for He is our hope to glory.
Jesus, by doing all of God’s work as shown by Paul above, opened the door to the new species of ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ that mankind can now receive and adopt through Jesus’ Personal living faith that’s now joined to the divine nature of God in Christ. (Heb.2:17; 4:15) It was God’s way of restituting humanity from Satan’s plan of taking mankind down his path of revolt, rebellion, and the sin of being gods unto themselves, and instead to live ton surrendered life in Christ. Paul speaks of our new ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus in this fashion, “Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new (redeemed) life has begun!” (2 Cor.5:17, italics mine, NLT). A life of such deep conviction without exception requires the living Personal faith of Jesus.
Jesus’ victory over sin and Satan generates a condition of righteousness in the believer (right standing with God) through His ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ (Matt.4:1-11; Gen.3:6, 11) We must not overlook nor bypass the wondrous truth of Jesus’ High Priesthood today. Jesus is humanity’s High Priest who Mediates for us day and night before the Father’s presence so we may be recipients of the flow of God’s uninterrupted grace from His glorious throne. The Bible tells us, “Therefore, since we have a great High Priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. (Heb.4:14). (You may read my post, “Born For His Highly Priestly Role And Function” at: http://bulamanriver.net/11230).
The ‘fallen Adamic humanity lives in spiritual darkness, while the second, the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ walks in God’s light. (Matt.4:16) Jesus went about in the Spirit’s power doing all manner of good and performed many miracles to alleviate the people’s suffering. (Act.10:38) One produces sin and death, and the other brings life, healing and immortality. (John 11:25; 14:6; Rom.6:23)
Through Jesus’ ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ He lived a perfect life on earth, and offered Himself as the only worthy sacrifice upon Calvary for all human sins and transgressions. God raised Him from the dead and He lives today as mankind’s High Priest in heaven clothed in both human/divine form and stature, forever mediating for mankind in God’s presence in the heavenly temple of Himself, and in the earthly temple of the heart of saved humanity…”Christ in us, the hope of glory” (1 Cor.3:16; 6:19; Col.1:27).
The purpose of the second ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus is to substitute for the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ of Adam so humanity may be given to enter God’s holy presence. Jesus did not come to save us in our old corrupt, depraved, and ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ that was sired by the devil. The prophet Jeremiah said our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ is “beyond cure.” (Jer.17:9) He came to nail it on His cross, and give us a new birth through His resurrection into the new ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ Paul makes this clear, “God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col.1:27). Yes, it is only through Christ that mankind is made holy and enter the presence of Almighty God.
The Scriptures goes on, “Do not think about how to gratify the natural desires of the flesh, (‘fallen Adamic humanity’), but instead clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ” (‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’) (Rom.13:14, italics my emphasis). Jesus, the ‘Immanuel human,’ was given to mankind as a gift from God the Father. (John 3:16) The ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ was consigned to a life under the sin-condition where Satan and his demonic spirits continue to imprison fallen mankind in the devil’s ‘consuming fire.’ The ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus frees humans from incarceration of the enemy’s sin-condition and prison and brings true freedom in the righteousness of God.
Paul said emphatically, “God made Him (Jesus) who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God” (1 Cor. 5:21). Instead of the ‘consuming fire’ humanity will enter and inherit Paradise which was lost initially through Adam’s fall in Eden. John tells us more about our Paradisal environment, as we’ll see later.
Paul said this about the new reborn life, “You have taken off your old self (‘fallen Adamic humanity’) with its practices and have put on the new self, (‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’) which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator” (Col.3:9-10, italics my emphasis; also Gen.1:26-27). Taking on Jesus’ ‘new redeemed Immanuel humanity’ is the essence of the New Covenant, listen to the language to the new covenant, “I will put a new Spirit (‘redeemed Immanuel human’) within you; and I will take the stony heart (‘fallen Adamic human’) out of their flesh, and I will give them a heart of flesh: that they may walk in my statutes, and keep my ordinances, and do them: and they will be my people, and I will be their God” (Ezek.11:19-20, italics my emphasis; Heb.8:10). Now, in conclusion…
The Ending: The Bible reveals Satan’s end in this way, “And the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur, into which the beast and the false prophet had already been thrown. There they will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Rev.20:10, BSB). Of course, among those punished are the incorrigible part of mankind of the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ who have stubbornly refused to accept God’s mercy and the gift of His Son as Savior. Yes, as we read from the start, the ‘consuming fire’ is real, but not for saved humanity. (John 3:16) The genesis of the concept of hell fire began with rebellious Lucifer and his fallen angelic beings. In other words, hell would not exist without Satan and his cohorts. (Rev.12:4)
The New Beginning – Future of Humanity: All of mankind who have received Jesus as Savior and given the rebirth through the Holy Spirit into the new human species of Christ’s ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ (John 3:3, 5-7) Humanity is made God’s very children fashoined in His Love image, inheriting God’s eternal Kingdom. When all things will have been restituted to God’s eternal will and plan, we hear God utter the following words, “I am making everything new! Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true. It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children” (Rev.20:5-7).
John recorded his vision at this future glorious flashpoint in time, saying, he saw the new Paradise, “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and He will dwell with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Rev.21:1-4),
Jesus says to us, “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else. So don’t be afraid, little flock. For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom…Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be” (Luk.12:31,32,34, NLT). The Bible promises, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory” (Rom.8:17).
As the newborn species of humanity we will never entertain any thought of living autonomously from God’s sovereign Love, for through Christ we have been made to live the surrendered life as part of the very triune Love nature in God. (1 John 4:16) Our human destiny is forever tied to His Word and sure promises. (2 Pet.1:4). Note the Scriptural reference regarding His promise, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ.” (Rom.8:17).
To become “heirs of God” is not identical with Lucifer’s (Satan’s) bizarre ‘take over’ scheme of revolting against his Creator. Rather to become “heirs of God” is to become heirs of who God is in His Love Personality, for “God is Love” by nature and personality. (1 John 4:8, 16; Gen.1:26-27). That is to say we become “Love Personality” as God is the supreme LOVE PERSONALITY in His Tri-Personal Being (Trinity). Through God’s Love Personality all creation is held together in harmony in the mantle of His power and Love, in all things both seen and unseen. To “share in His glory” means to share in His Triune Love Being by becoming “Love Personality” in our own right as the Bible affirms humanity was created in God’s Love image. (Gen.1:26-27; Psa.82:6; John 10:33-35)
The Book of Revelation tells us, “The one who overcomes will inherit all things, and I will be his God and he will be My son” (Rev.21:7). By saying, “the one who overcomes,” the statement beckons to our conscience about Lucifer’s and Adam’s original sin of revolting against the Creator and to never follow the path of autonomy from the Creator God, and the need to “overcome” such rebellious spirit which continues to abide in humans from the fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ of our first parents. To “inherit all things” means the earth and all creation, coupled with becoming the very spiritual “Love Personality” of God’s likeness, and conferred immortality. (1 Cor.15:54)
Let me add that by inheriting the “Love Personality” (nature) of the divine means humanity can never rebel or revolt against God. How so? Simply because inheriting the divine nature of Love and Freedom means we are granted hypostatic union with God in Christ, so it is implausible to rebel, let alone implement. When we will become Love Personalities made immortal in the resurrection, we will intuitively and spontaneously, “Love the Lord our God with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our mind and with all our strength” (Mar.12:30). God is not a inward looking or self-serving Being. That is how the fallen human mind think about this first commandment. “God is Love,” self-sufficient and self perpetuating, and needs nothing from us or for that matter His creation. He is the Uncreated and we are the created. The created needs its Creator, not the reverse. God created mankind to become Love as He Is, which means we will live at the level of consciousness of His divine Love existence. (1 John 4:16; Gen.1:26-27).
Understand, when we will have been resurrected and enter God’s spiritual realm, we will have been made immortal with Love Personalities like God. We now reflect God…He is our reality by nature and being. Therefore, to revolt against God would be suicidal…self-destructive. That was Lucifer’s choice. Paul said, “No one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church” (Eph.5:29). Rebeling against and harming onself is a self-destructive urge which we should naturally steer clear of whatever the circumstace…but God help us, how pernicious self-serving pride can blind and overtake us (as it did Lucifer), if we choose to go down that infernal path.
The Bible states “It is impossible for those who have experienced the good things of heaven and shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the Word of God and the power of the age to come, and who then turn away from God” (Heb.6:4-6). Further, the Scripture promises, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no heart has imagined, what God has prepared for those who Love Him” (1 Cor.2:9, BSB). All of saved humanity will live harmoniouly in God’s Love in perpetual joy, and everlasting glory.
Yes, humanity will never be able to plumb the depth of God’s Love for His people. Further Paul encourages us, “That Christ (Redeemed Immanuel humanity) may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in Love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the Love of Christ, and to know this Love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God” (Eph.3:17-19, italics my emphasis).
Paul gave us a practical example of how we are made to become one with God through His Love, saying, “Let patience (patience is a fruit of Love…1 Cor.13:4) have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing” (Jam.1:4). This ‘perfect work’ is a process happening across the broad spectrum of God’s Love-fruits Paul taught and revealed in 1 Corinthians 13. This life of Love defines for us the template of Jesus’ own surrendered life. (John 5:19) (Read all about the Spirit’s Love-Fruits at: http://bulamanriver.net/25496)
The full act of God across the broad spectrum of His Love and Love-fruits reveals the act of perfection where Love is the power which has no want or lack but is complete in and of itself and fully self-functional while personally inter-dependent in God’s trinitarian likeness. The ‘Immanuel human’ will be deficient in nothing, but one with and undivided in the Creator God’s triunity. Without Love we are nothing, but with the triune Love we are all that we can be in God’s divine and eternal wellbeing for His beloved human children. (1 Cor.1:1) (Read my post, “Living God’s Love Day By Day” at: http://bulamanriver.net/16467)
Holistically, “inheriting all things” means essentially to receive eternal life as the most vital gift humans can receive from God the Father. (Rom.8:11) For without immortality all God’s promises are mere pipe dreams and illusions. The Bible states, “Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.” “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor.15:54-58).
Let us ask as we contemplate our human destiny, what more can a human being created in God’s image ask for it is “your Father’s great pleasure to give you the Kingdom” and to become heir of “all things” with His Son? (Luk.12:32; Matt.16:26)
Humanity is collectively accountable for the conditions we face in the world today, be it good or bad. Nothing happens in isolation, for what is happening on the other side of our earth impacts everyone. The Covid 19 Pandemic attest to that fact, and so does the climate crisis. As the year 2022 rolls in, perhaps the most pertinent question we ask ourselves is, are we prepared to let our better angels come through for us in the form of our true self in Jesus’ ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’? How wonderful to live life in such a exquisite new human reality with an equally creative and restorative consciousness greet the year for a better future for our loved ones, our neighbors, and all mankind?
Jesus gives us pertinent advice about how to live in this world, “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes” (Matt.6:34, The Message).
Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who is our hope and has enabled us to live the Triune Life*. Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us. I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious Immnuel humanity made children of God forever.
You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religious sect or denomination, or divisions one may espouse – but into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God the Creator’s dwelling:
Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon me and all humanity. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”
Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects listed in our ‘archives’ that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.
Personal Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.
Farewell for now!
Appendix: *Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26; Matt.28:19; John 14:10, 16; 16:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God in His plurality, as the Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. Love by its nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.
Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2; Eph.5:23-27, 32; Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.
It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23) God created humanity to reflect Himself in His unified Tri-Personal Being (Trinity).
Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness, not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God, just as humanity is one with Adam.
Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the Trinity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.
The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.
**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.
All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.
Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664
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