“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.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The promised Spirit

“Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: that the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.” (Gal. 3:13,14).
“Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.”(Gal. 3:6,7).
“For he that is entered into His rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from His.” (Heb. 4:10).
Our Redeemer desires to give all of us His divine nature, His Spirit. His Spirit gives the power to restore His nature in His children. Then they are His reward and purchased possession (Isa. 62:11; Mal. 3:16-18). Then His Spirit is their spirit. They have a union with Him that no longer contains the wrath of Satan. And God has respect to them.
This is what He judges us by. Do we have His Spirit? Do we have His nature? Our works come into judgment only as indicators of the presence of His nature. But, the works that come from His divine nature are imbued with love and self-forgetfulness, forgiveness, peace, the trust of a child, etc. He doesn’t accept anyone of the human race because they display a good living except that the evidence of His nature is there in their good work. And that evidence is only for our discernment because we can’t read the heart of anyone, or even read our own heart correctly. But, He does read the heart. So He knows what spirit we have; He knows if we are receiving from Him. “The foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His.” (2Tim. 2:19).
He knows in all of our piety if we are feeding off the bread from heaven. He knows them who drink of His water that wells up “into everlasting life.” (Jn. 4:14). He knows if we are receiving His Spirit because He senses the connection His children have with Him. “Somebody hath touched Me: for I perceive that virtue is gone out of Me.” (Luke 8:46). Jesus can tell, even from His throne in the heavenly sanctuary, when His Spirit is received. “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” (John 1:12).
He shares with them the happiness of fellowship with His Father. He shares the anointing, the water of life which He drinks new, without end, and without measure. “He shall drink of the brook in the way: therefore shall He lift up the head.” (Ps. 110:7). “Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, Thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellows.” (Ps. 45:7). “I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.” (Matt. 26:29). In that anointing there is light and power and sweet love joy and peace.
His Father’s Spirit of love and righteousness fills Him and keeps the youthfulness of His mien constant and everlasting. “Thou art fairer than the children of men: grace is poured into Thy lips: therefore God hath blessed Thee for ever.”(Ps. 45:2). “For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root [of life amongst]…dry ground.” (Isa. 53:2). “Thy people shall be willing in the day of Thy power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: Thou hast the dew of Thy youth.” (Ps. 110:3).
“No man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal Him.” (Matt. 11:27). Only the Son hath the Father, and only the Son hath His Father’s life, original, unborrowed, underived. For He says, “All things are delivered unto Me of My Father.” (Matt. 11:27). And we that have the Son have the original, unborrowed, underived life that He received of His Father.
He that hath the Son hath His Spirit. This is the promise from the beginning. “And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.” (Gen. 17:19). Isaac was the longed for son of Abraham’s, “In Isaac shall thy seed be called.” (Rom. 9:7). Isaac was also a type of Christ, who is the promised gift from God for a world of sinners. “Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith…to thy seed, which is Christ.” (Gal. 3:16).
All who receive Him or the evidence of His love for them, receive His Spirit. “Believe Me that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me: or else believe Me for the very works’ sake.” (John 14:11). “And this is the will of Him that sent Me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on Him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.” (John 6:40).
This is what was happening during His ministry and even more so at His ascension and beyond. His virtue, His life, His promised Spirit was being restored to people everywhere He went. His disciples had to see the Son. They had to look and live. Then they turned the world up-side-down.
“And when He had so said, He shewed unto them His hands and His side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as My Father hath sent Me, even so send I you. And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost: whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.” (John 20:20-23). Not until faith came could they recognize Jesus, their dear friend. Once they saw Him, they were glad, He spoke peace to them, and breathed on them His Spirit. He would give them the power to recognize repentance and the authority to speak in His behalf. When, from the throne, His Father would breathe on them through His only begotten Son, then His promised gift would be realized.
Forty days later, the time arrived for Him to leave them and go to His Father.
“Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw Him, they worshipped Him: but some doubted.
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.” (Mat 28:16-20). “That repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things.” (Luke 24:47,48).
“And these signs shall follow them that believe; In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” (Mark 16:17,18). “And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem,” (Acts 1:4). “And He said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in His own power.” (Acts 1:7).
“But wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith He, ye have heard of Me.” (Acts 1:4). “And, behold, I send the promise of My Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.” (Luke 24:49). “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8).

“For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.” (Acts 1:5). “And when He had spoken these things, while they beheld, He was taken up; and a cloud received Him out of their sight.” (Acts 1:9). “So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, He was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.” (Mark 16:19).
“And He led them out as far as to Bethany, and He lifted up His hands, and blessed them. And it came to pass, while He blessed them, He was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.” (Luke 24:50,51). “And they worshipped Him.” (Luke 24:52).
“And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:10,11).

“Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day’s journey” (Acts 1:12), “and were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God.” (Luke 24:53) “with great joy.” (Luke 24:52).
“The Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.” (Heb. 7:21). “Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even Thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellows.… Sit on My right hand, until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool” (Heb. 1:9-13).
“And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance....
But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words....
And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of My Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:
And on My servants and on My handmaidens I will pour out in those days of My Spirit; and they shall prophesy:
And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:
The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come:
And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a Man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know.” (Acts 2:1-4,14,17-22).
“Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, He hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.
For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit Thou on My right hand,
Until I make Thy foes Thy footstool.
Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.
And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” (Acts 2:33-47). “And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.” (Mark 16:20).
“Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.
And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.
And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.
And all the people saw him walking and praising God:
And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.
And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon’s, greatly wondering.
And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk?
The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified His Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied Him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let Him go.
But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you;
And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.
And His name through faith in His name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by Him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
And now, brethren, I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers.
But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all His prophets, that Christ should suffer, He hath so fulfilled.
Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
And He shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you:
Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began.” (Acts 3:6-21).
“Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed.
Unto you first God, having raised up His Son Jesus, sent Him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.” (Acts 3:25-26).
“Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,
If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole;
Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by Him doth this man stand here before you whole.
This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.
Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.” (Acts 4:8-13).
“And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them.
And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, Thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is:
Who by the mouth of Thy servant David hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things?
The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against His Christ.
For of a truth against Thy holy child Jesus, whom Thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together,
For to do whatsoever Thy hand and Thy counsel determined before to be done.
And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto Thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak Thy word,
By stretching forth Thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of Thy holy child Jesus.
And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.
And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.
And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.” (Acts 4:23-33).
“And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.
Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them.
There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one.
Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with him, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation,
And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison.
But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said,
Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life….
Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.
The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.
Him hath God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.
And we are His witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey Him.
When they heard that, they were cut to the heart, and took counsel to slay them.
Then stood there up one in the council, a Pharisee, named Gamaliel, a doctor of the law, had in reputation among all the people, and commanded to put the apostles forth a little space;
And said unto them, Ye men of Israel, take heed to yourselves what ye intend to do as touching these men.…
And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought:
But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God.
And to him they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.
And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name.
And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” (Acts 5:14-20, 29-42).

A lot can happen when the Spirit of the Lord is in control of men and women. They laid hold of the promise of Christ’s Spirit. By faith the apostles were wearing Christ’s robe of righteousness. That gave them the courage to speak out to the nation and to risk their lives and health. However, later some Christians began to waver in their whole reliance on Christ and His Spirit.
“O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.” (Gal. 3:1-7).
Paul sounds like he had a problem with the Law of God. But, He himself loved the Law of God. “For I delight in the law of God after the inward man.” (Rom. 7:22). “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.” (Rom. 8:6,7). “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Rom. 6:23).
Paul loved the Law of God, yet he recognized that he still had a fallen nature that Satan kept trying to pollute and control. Paul had learned that without the gift of the divine nature, walking in the Spirit instead of relying on our own resources to be good, all acts of goodness were filthy in God’s sight. This is what he was trying to re-explain to the believers of Galatia who began to re-lapse into the empty Babylonian religion of the Sanhedrin.
“We are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. And there is none that calleth upon Thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of Thee: for Thou hast hid Thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities.” (Isa. 64:5-7). Our own works being unacceptable to God has always been part of the everlasting gospel. To the self-motivated and successful at morality this has always been bad news. The other part is that God will supply the power for obedience and then they will be acceptable to Him. To the weak-willed and failures at morality, this has always been good news.
With the Spirit giving us the inspiration to obey the Law, our works are completely acceptable. “Thou meetest him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness, those that remember Thee in Thy ways.” (Isa. 64:5). “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.” (Isa. 26:3). “Let him take hold of My strength, that he may make peace with Me; and he shall make peace with Me.” (Isa. 27:5). This group make the Lord and His ways their focus. And their works do follow them.
So our works of the Law are good if, and only if, they come out of His work, the work of the Spirit. When they see His love, then they love, too. Otherwise, their work is grossly filthy. Those who live this way may part their hoof from the path of immorality, but they don’t chew the cud of God’s word, which testifies of Jesus and His love. He can never know them. They are unclean from the inside out.
“But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His.” (Rom. 8:9). “How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” “That…they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.” (Heb. 9:14,15).

That “eternal inheritance” is the “eternal Spirit”, both promised with an oath. It is God’s oath that makes the sure mercies of David so sure and steadfast to us. The eternal Spirit is the Spirit of Christ by which He promised He would never leave us if we remain abiding in Him. “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on Him, If ye continue in My word, then are ye My disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31,32). “I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.” (John 14:18). “If a man love Me, he will keep My words: and My Father will love him, and We will come unto him, and make Our abode with him.” (John 14:23).
Having the Spirit from Christ through faith in His name is not optional; it’s a matter of life or death. Being born again of the quickening water of Christ and the empowering Spirit of Christ is what salvation is. Only under His control can we love His laws and obey them. Christ redeemed us from dead works through the gift of His Spirit working in us to will and to do of His good pleasure. And He desires to redeem us from a dead, imagined conversion and religious experience.

Without the Spirit we are none of God’s, we have no part in His kingdom. No love for Jesus means no obedience; no Spirit of Jesus, no power to trust and obey. The only other option to His Spirit of life is a living death, our own living in country club ethics and lip service morality, an unclean humanistic service to the cursed god of this world in the name of the one true God of Abraham.
“For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.
Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.” (Gal. 3:10-14).

The “promise of the Spirit through faith” is the same “promise of eternal inheritance”, and the promised “eternal Spirit”, which was “the blessing of Abraham”. As Peter had delineated, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” (Acts 2:39). “Please, brethren, accept the free gift from heaven for you and your children!”
But, Satan hates the loss of even one soul when we turn to God in repentance. Nothing else than our need of God can give us the strength to break away from Satan. Through our simple need do we receive the Spirit of God that empowers us to leave the manipulations of the devil and his hosts.
So he moves his earthly priests of humanism, his sorcerers of spiritualism within the church, who enter into our lives and remove the faith that we have in our Redeemer. They are “false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage.” (Gal. 2:4). They can look nice and friendly, but inwardly they are ravening wolves, wolves in sheep’s clothing. Of them Jesus warned, “Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.” (Matt. 16:6).
Because they have not the Spirit of Christ, they cannot lead them to Christ. They speak in soft, unthreatening, and confident tones and words; and they woo the disciples of the Lord away from their strong source of freedom from Satan. And though works of mercy and righteousness are very essential, and though the Law is “holy, and just, and good” (Rom. 7:12), they rob God’s children of their faith in the Saviour and convince them to look only at the Law and at their works. The problem is in not looking at Jesus, who is the Law of God in a person of joy and love.
Satan knows that if he can blank the knowledge of God from their thinking then He has them in his power. Eventually, if they remain long entranced by an ostentatious display of religiosity then Christ will no longer be “evidently set forth, crucified” (Gal. 3:1) before them. His love for them disappears from their thinking. They are “bewitched” and bewildered, and they foolishly abandon “the truth” of the Spirit of Christ to “obey” that truth. (Gal. 3:1).
“For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error.
While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage.
For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.” (2Pet. 2:18-20). “What shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?”(1Pet. 4:17).
No one is just before God without faith in His love by which He worked the Law. “Without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” (Heb. 11:6).
“And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect. For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.” (Gal. 3:17,18).
Peter had told the people of Israel that the blessing of Abraham was foremostly a spiritual blessing. The covenant of God to Israel from the beginning was the promise of the Spirit. “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” (Acts 2:38,39). Be called, repent, have remission of sins, receive the gift of God—all was the promise to Abraham, to his seed, and to all that were far from the uprightness and circumspect character of Abraham, yet still wanting to be called.
This was “the everlasting covenant” (Isa. 24:5); this is “the everlasting gospel” (Rev. 14:6). “Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.” (Isa. 55:3).
“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;
To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He might be glorified.
And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations.
And strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, and the sons of the alien shall be your plowmen and your vinedressers.
But ye shall be named the Priests of the LORD: men shall call you the Ministers of our God: ye shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, and in their glory shall ye boast yourselves.
For your shame ye shall have double; and for confusion they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them.
For I the LORD love judgment, I hate robbery for burnt offering; and I will direct their work in truth, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.
And their seed shall be known among the Gentiles, and their offspring among the people: all that see them shall acknowledge them, that they are the seed which the LORD hath blessed.” (Isa. 61:1-9).
That was the word that the apostles preached to the world. And Isaiah ended it by saying, “I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, He hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.” (Isa. 61:10). Isaiah knew what the divine nature was. All the prophets knew it, all of them being “holy men of God…moved by the Holy Ghost.” (2Pet. 1:21).
The divine nature, Christ’s robe of righteousness that comes to us when we accumulate enough evidence of His willingness to forgive and love, all of these lead us to repentance. This is the original covenant God has always had for the salvation of sinners and the redemption of His “first dominion” (Mic. 4:8), after which “affliction shall not rise up the second time.” (Nah. 1:9).
The promise of the Spirit was the everlasting covenant, the gift of humbling our proud nature, Christ’s work of our conversion and holiness, His restoration of the image of God in man, the robe of His righteousness. This is the everlasting gospel that must be preached to all the world.
“And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people.” (Rev. 14:6). In the past they had to see the Son. And so must we today. We need to search for the Son in the scriptures, for “saith He,” “they are they which testify of Me.” (John 5:39).


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