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“Oh, the unspeakable greatness of that exchange,—the Sinless One is condemned, and he who is guilty goes free; the Blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is brought into blessing; the Life dies, and the dead live; the Glory is whelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory.” Trailady

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A person God turned around many times.

Monday, February 11, 2013

God the wisest general

“O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out!” (Rom. 11:33).

Lucifer’s assault on the great God appeared slight. But God knew the disastrous results which Lucifer had devised that would ultimately leave the King without anyone in His kingdom. For His creation to realize the full damage waylaid against God and later to His kingdom, One in their form must meet the adversary and take the blows of Lucifer. By Christ meeting the devil as a man, the murderous effect of the raging insulted one would be the most pronounced and horrific.

Just as the Father foreknew, Satan’s unending, aggravated bludgeoning upon His beloved Son demonstrated graphically the enmity against God and His government. Jesus took it all and drew from His Father’s assailant Satan’s clearest self-incrimination. Here is wisdom exemplary and self-sacrifice unrivalled.

By God condescending to the advocacy of His Son, the King undercut all future attempts by the devil to accuse Him of the lack of unbiased objectivity when the courts of heaven would one day arraign Lucifer on the charge of treason. That court has already convened and is soon to deliver its sentence. “The Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of His head like the pure wool: His throne was like the fiery flame, and His wheels as burning fire.
A fiery stream issued and came forth from before Him: thousand thousands ministered unto Him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before Him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened.” (Dan. 7:9,10). Until that judgment should sit, the eternal One would hand over the operation of the government to His Son.

“Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” (Isa. 9:6).
“For [Christ] must reign, till [God] hath put all enemies under His
feet.…
And when all things shall be subdued unto Him, then shall the Son also Himself be subject unto Him that put all things under Him, that God may be all in all.” (1Cor. 15:25,28).

Michael managed heaven’s great controversy through His dealings with humanity. “In all their affliction He was afflicted, and the Angel of His presence saved them: in His love and in His pity He redeemed them; and He bare them, and carried them all the days of old.” (Isa. 63:9). He demonstrated, through the patriarchs from Adam to Jacob’s children, through the nation of Israel, and through His church, that by His wisdom and character, inherited from His Father, the problem of sin is dealt with fairly, that love is always His modis operandi. Only ever, the rule that heaven uses is the ultimate good of His subjects; all things work together for good. For all to witness, God has been exonerated; His wisdom and love have been vindicated.

Human testimonies, one after another, revealed the preferred freedom from Satan and his bondage.
“I waited patiently for the LORD; and He inclined unto me, and heard my cry.
He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.
And He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.
Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD His trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.
Many, O LORD my God, are Thy wonderful works which Thou hast done, and Thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up in order unto Thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.
Sacrifice and offering Thou didst not desire; mine ears hast Thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast Thou not required.
Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me,
I delight to do Thy will, O my God: yea, Thy law is within my heart.” (Psa. 40:1-8). True happiness of citizenship in God’s kingdom has brought the greatest joy to those who finally left Satan’s playground and surrendered to God’s gracious rule.

Despite Satan’s unabated wrath against the saints, they have all praised God from their whole heart. From the beginning there has always been a remnant that served God and obeyed His commandments from a perfect and redeemed soul. “Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered? But thus saith the LORD, Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of the terrible shall be delivered: for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee, and I will save thy children.” (Isa. 49:24,25).

The cross became the sword that overthrew Satan’s hold on the minds of creation. The Lamb of God became the Lion of the tribe of Judah. “Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto Me.” (Jn. 12:31,32). The secret weapon to undo the enemy lay in an overwhelming demonstration of sacrifice that could win back the minds and hearts of unfallen heaven, and even the fallen children of Adam.

Thus, it is that “when He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.” (Eph. 4:8). But, once ascended on high, the victorious Michael immediately went on the war path against His powerful enemy.

“And she brought forth a Man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to His throne….
And there was war in heaven: Michael and His angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.” (Rev. 12:5,7-12).

 In the middle of the dangers of pagan persecutions, Paul praised God.

“Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;
Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.
For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.
And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation.
And our hope of you is stedfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.
For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life:
But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead:
Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that He will yet deliver us;
Ye also helping together by prayer for us, that for the gift bestowed upon us by the means of many persons thanks may be given by many on our behalf.
For our rejoicing is this, the testimony of our conscience, that in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom, but by the grace of God, we have had our conversation in the world, and more abundantly to you-ward.” (2Cor. 1:3-12).

Satan was forced to Earth. From his base here he continued his attack on God by attacking God’s children. “And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, and His tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.
And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” (Rev. 13:6-8).

Satan’s affront on Christ was carried out by his leading Christ’s church into bondage. “After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces.” (Dan. 7:7). The evil one stole the original structure of Christianity, gutted it of the truth, and stuffed it with his age-old paganism and spiritualism. As early as A.D. 120 the Waldensian Christians began to speak against the apostasy. Then, with the sword Satan killed all who resisted his domination. Rev. 13:10.

The satanic hosts moved the “Church” to trample “the residue with the feet of it.” (Dan. 7:7). All who separated from the apostatized Christianity and fled from civilization, who kept the gospel and the original commandments of God, were under the constant threat of extermination. Surely, the disciples of Christ in those days saw this as another fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy.

“When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:
For then shall be great tribulation.” (Matt. 24:15-21).

The first fulfillment of this had come against the apostles and their immediate followers when the pagan emperors sought to crush the church. But, this new, second persecution around A.D. 300 was equally fierce, when the Abomination of desolation rose up as Daniel has spoken of in Daniel 7, 8, and 11.

Like a Kilimanjaro volcano, the mammoth hierarchy grew gradually, but persistently. Once the building of Babel was finished, and the abomination of desolation was fully established in A.D. 538, there followed a long 1,260 year tribulation on God’s people by the “Church”. “When the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the Man child.
And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.” (Rev. 12:13,14).

This long persecution is comprehended in the prophecy, “When He had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost Thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.” (Rev. 6:9-11). At the very end of time would come yet the last of the three great tribulations, a time of trouble such as never was.

But, this long persecution did not come unanticipated; God expected it. He knows His enemy’s predictable ambition to win, and fury to lose in a fight. The Ancient of Days knew the uncontrollable rage with which the redemption of His kingdom would affect His enemy. He knew that taking back His hostages from the wicked one would only create unfettered revenge from the old serpent. It was foreseen, but, due to the laws of free choice, God would not stop Satan. God gave the devil the rope to hang himself. He drove the final nails in his own casket; but, the martyrs of Jesus, who laid down their existence for the final vindication of the King, will be resurrected after the controversy on earth is finished and live as honored, rightful citizens of the kingdom forever.

Christ revealed this to His prophet long beforehand, and placed it in the book of truth to encourage and strengthen His people for the long battle throughout the Dark Ages. “And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.” (Dan. 7:25). Those reformers read and reread this prophecy, remembering that God had control of the frightful conflagration crusading against them.

Then, “it was given unto him....” (Rev. 13:7). God permitted Satan to raise up Ignatius de Loyola, and Loyola’s Counter-reformation Jesuits brought renewed life to the armies from beneath in the warfare against Christ’s church in the wilderness. What was this like, you may ask? Just look at horrific Hitler Germany. Hitler admitted to organizing his regime after the Jesuitical order. “And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.” (Rev. 12:15). But, unbeknowned to the Bible Christians, the Lord had already prepared the salvation of His people through the discovery of America by Christopher Columbus. They had to walk by faith, not by sight. And this they did, by His grace.

“And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.” (Rev. 12:16). America came available as a refuge to the battered church. Christ did not leave His bride in their night of horror. But He purified her through it.

“Jesus…delivered us from the wrath to come.” (1Thess. 1:10).
“For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1Thess. 5:9). True, we aren’t appointed to the wrath of the final judgment day. As the burnt sacrifice, Jesus took the wrath of God against us when He offered up Himself in our place. But, we still need to be sanctified through the devil’s affliction. “Behold, I have refined thee, but not with silver; I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.” (Isa. 48:10). “He knoweth the way that I take: when He hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.” (Job 23:10).
As Hannah was perfected in hardship; so will they be. And the song of Hannah would be theirs.

“My heart rejoiceth in the LORD, mine horn is exalted in the LORD: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in Thy salvation.
There is none holy as the LORD: for there is none beside Thee: neither is there any Rock like our God.
Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by Him actions are weighed.
The bows of the mighty men are broken, and they that stumbled are girded with strength.
They that were full have hired out themselves for bread; and they that were hungry ceased: so that the barren hath born seven; and she that hath many children is waxed feeble.
The LORD killeth, and maketh alive: He bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up.
The LORD maketh poor, and maketh rich: He bringeth low, and lifteth up.
He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory: for the pillars of the earth are the LORD’s, and He hath set the world upon them.
He will keep the feet of His saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness; for by strength shall no man prevail.
The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken to pieces; out of heaven shall He thunder upon them: the LORD shall judge the ends of the earth; and He shall give strength unto His king, and exalt the horn of His anointed.” (1Sam. 2:1-1).

To His precious church Jesus said, “For, behold, I have made thee this day a defenced city, and an iron pillar, and brasen walls against the whole land, against the kings of Judah, against the princes thereof, against the priests thereof, and against the people of the land.
And they shall fight against thee; but they shall not prevail against thee; for I am with thee, saith the LORD, to deliver thee.” (Jer. 1:18,19).

From His throne in the Holy Place of His heavenly sanctuary He directed the salvation of His people and the preservation of His truth. “Let the field be joyful, and all that is therein: then shall all the trees of the wood rejoice before the LORD: for He cometh, for He cometh to judge the earth: He shall judge the world with righteousness, and the people with His truth.” (Psa. 96:12).
“For He must reign, till He hath put all enemies under His feet.” (1Cor. 15:25).

Finally, the papal persecutions ended; but, though proven a failure against the saints’ faith in God’s grace, Lucifer had not given up against God yet. He would dig his hole deeper. He would make his damnation complete.

“And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.” (Rev. 12:16,17). The church’s escape to America only made Satan’s anger more explosive.

“And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” (Rev. 12:17). Thus, here in Protestant America lays the final battleground between Christ and Satan. The remnant of Christ’s seed will be strengthened, settled, established—sealed and perfectly obedient to the commandments and will of God. They will have Christ’s personal guidance, for “the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” (Rev. 19:10).

And here we are; the attack has begun. The Bible has been secretly mutilated and altered by false theologians and scientists alike. “When the Son of man cometh, shall He find faith on the earth?” is the question of the hour. (Luk. 18:8). Very few know the gospel and have its saving power. The church is filled with worshippers who exalt God from their own spirit and not by His. Satan has more control of us than many think.

The Bible declares that before the coming of the Lord there will exist a state of religious declension similar to that in the first centuries. “In the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.” 2 Timothy 3:1-5. “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.” 1 Timothy 4:1. Satan will work “with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness.” And all that “received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved,” will be left to accept “strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.” 2 Thessalonians 2:9-11. When this state of ungodliness shall be reached, the same results will follow as in the first centuries.  Great Controversy, p. 444.

The prophecy of America said, “And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.
And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.” (Rev. 13:11,12).

Today we see the ramping up of Satan’s forces against God, one last time. The United States, the number one aggressor nation, is speaking like the dragon, even now, and soon to get louder and bolder. Lawlessness will continue to spread throughout the land by the behind-the-scenes work of the Jesuits, who “have been taught to plant insidiously the seeds of jealousy and hatred between communities, provinces, states that were at peace, and to incite them to deeds of blood, involving them in war with each other, and to create revolutions and civil wars in countries that were independent and prosperous.” The result of the undercover Jesuits will be new legislations that cause civil liberties to erode. As the slide into lawlessness continues by the world once protected by the Protestant Constitution of freedom, a mighty work overseen by the beast, which was almost destroyed by the sword of the Spirit–the Bible, will move America, the beautiful, ever closer to the overthrow of its own great Constitution, and turn to destroy the world it once protected.

And let it be remembered, it is the boast of Rome that she never changes. The principles of Gregory VII and Innocent III are still the principles of the Roman Catholic Church. And had she but the power, she would put them in practice with as much vigor now as in past centuries. Protestants little know what they are doing when they propose to accept the aid of Rome in the work of Sunday exaltation. While they are bent upon the accomplishment of their purpose, Rome is aiming to re-establish her power, to recover her lost supremacy. Let the principle once be established in the United States that the church may employ or control the power of the state; that religious observances may be enforced by secular laws; in short, that the authority of church and state is to dominate the conscience, and the triumph of Rome in this country is assured.
     God’s word has given warning of the impending danger; let this be unheeded, and the Protestant world will learn what the purposes of Rome really are, only when it is too late to escape the snare. She is silently growing into power. Her doctrines are exerting their influence in legislative halls, in the churches, and in the hearts of men. She is piling up her lofty and massive structures in the secret recesses of which her former persecutions will be repeated. Stealthily and unsuspectedly she is strengthening her forces to further her own ends when the time shall come for her to strike. All that she desires is vantage ground, and this is already being given her. We shall soon see and shall feel what the purpose of the Roman element is. Whoever shall believe and obey the word of God will thereby incur reproach and persecution.  Great Controversy, p. 581.

“And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.” (Rev. 13:14). When Protestant America finally gives up its Constitution of religious freedom, it will throw away every other freedom in the Bill of Rights. We see this already in the works.

When Protestantism shall stretch her hand across the gulf to grasp the hand of the Roman power, when she shall reach over the abyss to clasp hands with spiritualism, when, under the influence of this threefold union, our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government and shall make provision for the propagation of papal falsehoods and delusions, then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near.—Testimonies for the church, vol. 5, p. 451.

The third and final persecution will be the most ferocious, but also, the most victorious. “And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great Prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.” (Dan. 12:1).
“I will make a man more precious than fine gold; even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir.” (Isa. 13:12).

But, we have the promise that God wins in the end. “But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away [Satan’s and his Church’s] dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end.
And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey Him.” (Dan. 7:26,27).

“And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.
Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath made herself ready.
And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.” (Rev. 19:6,8).

Satan’s policy in this final conflict with God’s people is the same that he employed in the opening of the great controversy in heaven. He professed to be seeking to promote the stability of the divine government, while secretly bending every effort to secure its overthrow. And the very work which he was thus endeavoring to accomplish he charged upon the loyal angels. The same policy of deception has marked the history of the Roman Church. It has professed to act as the vicegerent of Heaven, while seeking to exalt itself above God and to change His law. Under the rule of Rome, those who suffered death for their fidelity to the gospel were denounced as evildoers; they were declared to be in league with Satan; and every possible means was employed to cover them with reproach, to cause them to appear in the eyes of the people and even to themselves as the vilest of criminals. So it will be now. While Satan seeks to destroy those who honor God’s law, he will cause them to be accused as lawbreakers, as men who are dishonoring God and bringing judgments upon the world.
     God never forces the will or the conscience; but Satan’s constant resortto gain control of those whom he cannot otherwise seduceis compulsion by cruelty. Through fear or force he endeavors to rule the conscience and to secure homage to himself. To accomplish this, he works through both religious and secular authorities, moving them to the enforcement of human laws in defiance of the law of God. Great Controversy, p. 591.

In all of the great war between heaven and hell, never once has Christ overstepped the boundaries of free will in any of His Father's creatures in heaven or earth. Just like His Father, by slow and gradual movements has He garnered the full loyalty of His subjects, those who would be loyal to right and to love. He whose purposes know no haste and no delay says, “the children are tender, and the flocks and herds with young are with Me: and if men should overdrive them one day, all the flock will die.… I will lead on softly, according as the cattle that goeth before Me and the children be able to endure.” (Gen. 33:13,14). “God is too wise to err, and too good to withhold any good thing from them that walk uprightly.” Steps to Christ, p. 96.

None but our wise and perfect Father could end Lucifer’s dangerous and deceitful usurpation of God’s kingdom.

“Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, in the mountain of His holiness.” (Psa. 48:1).
“For the LORD is great, and greatly to be praised: He is to be feared above all gods.” (Psa. 96:4).
“Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; and His greatness is unsearchable.” (Psa. 145:3).

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