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Sunday, June 26 2011

The Children's Crossing

The first human had no physical parents.

"2:7 And the LORD God [see Christ The Creator and 'Before Abraham Was, I AM'] formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul [see The First Souls and Where Is Your Soul?]" (Genesis 2:7 KJV)

The second human also had no parents (see also Who Was Never A Child?), however she was created from the within, although not within, of a physical human.

"2:21 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; 2:22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.

2:23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

2:24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife [see also Adam And Eve's Wedding Night]: and they shall be one flesh." (Genesis 2:21-24 KJV)

Those sinless humans, male and female, were created in the image of God.

The Holy Scriptures

"1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them." (Genesis 1:27 KJV)

Children are often described as "just like his father," or "just like her mother" ("like" is an abbreviation of likeness, which means image). While the term "just like" can refer to appearance, it just as often can refer to behavior e.g. "he dislikes broccoli, just like his father," or "she likes to sing, just like her mother." The meaning of image is not limited to appearance. It includes behavior.

What was it about their being in "God's own image" that changed when the first humans became sinners? Was it their appearance, or was it their behavior? It was of course their behavior. Sinners cannot exist in the image of the sinless God.

The same principle applies to Satan. Like the humans that he caused to continue his rebellion, he became evil in behavior, not in appearance. Exactly like the first humans, "Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee."

"28:13 Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created." (Ezekiel 28:13 KJV)

"28:15 Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee." (Ezekiel 28:15 KJV)

"11:13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 11:14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 11:15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works." (2 Corinthians 11:13-15 KJV)

"They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed."

The Messiah's famous "born again" teaching (see Born Again, How and When?) is about how physical humans cannot enter the Kingdom of God, as sinners, but must, by means of the repentance that is required to accept the offer of Christ's sacrifice, be transformed into sinless spiritual children of God - restored to God's own image.

Crossing The Jordan

"3:1 There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: 3:2 The same came to Jesus by night [see also What Happened At Night?], and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.

3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God [see The Gospel of The Kingdom of God and What Will Heaven Be Like?; also When And Where Your Eternal Life Will Begin].

3:4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?

3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. 3:8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit." (John 3:1-8 KJV)

The "promised land" of Israel was not an end in itself. It was a prophetic object lesson of the place where those who obey God will be given to live. Once again, it was and is a matter of behavior, not mere appearance or family relation. Almost all of the adult generation of the Exodus failed to enter the promised land because they refused to obey the LORD, who was Christ (see 1 Corinthians 10:1-12). Their children entered because they were yet obedient to the LORD - the purpose of that land of milk and honey (see the Fact Finder question below). It wasn't a lesson about any one generation being more obedient to God than any other (Joshua and Caleb were of the older generation and they did enter); it was about anyone and everyone living, as best that they at present humanly can, according to the sinless "image" of God.

"14:21 But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD. 14:22 Because all those men which have seen my glory, and my miracles, which I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and have tempted me now these ten times, and have not hearkened to my voice; 14:23 Surely they shall not see the land which I sware unto their fathers, neither shall any of them that provoked me see it: 14:24 But my servant Caleb, because he had another spirit with him, and hath followed me fully, him will I bring into the land whereinto he went; and his seed shall possess it. 14:25 Now the Amalekites and the Canaanites dwelt in the valley. To morrow turn you, and get you into the wilderness by the way of the Red sea.

14:26 And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, 14:27 How long shall I bear with this evil congregation, which murmur against me? I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel, which they murmur against me. 14:28 Say unto them, As truly as I live, saith the LORD, as ye have spoken in mine ears, so will I do to you: 14:29 Your carcases shall fall in this wilderness [see A Journey Without A Destination]; and all that were numbered of you, according to your whole number, from twenty years old and upward, which have murmured against me, 14:30 Doubtless ye shall not come into the land, concerning which I sware to make you dwell therein, save Caleb the son of Jephunneh, and Joshua the son of Nun. 14:31 But your little ones, which ye said should be a prey, them will I bring in, and they shall know the land which ye have despised." (Numbers 14:21-31 KJV)

The Holy Bible has always been about who people are spiritually (what "spirit" they live by - see Is He Out Of Your Mind?), not merely who they seem to be physically (see What Made Abraham Righteous?).

"9:6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: 9:7 Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called. 9:8 That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed." (Romans 9:6-8 KJV)

The Messiah plainly stated who will enter the Eternal Promised Land - and who will not (see also The Strait Gate).

"21:6 And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 21:7 He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone [see The Lake Of Fire Into An Ocean Of Fire - When?]: which is the second death." (Revelation 21:6-8 KJV)

Fact Finder: Who does "the land of milk and honey" mean?
See Milk and Honey

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This Day In History, June 26

363: The Roman Emperor Julian was killed by an arrow during a clash with Persian cavalry (Persia is known today as Iran; see also Ancient Empires - Persia). Jovian, a Roman general, was proclaimed Emperor by the battlefield troops (see Ancient Empires - Rome; also Whatever Happened To Those Romans?).

1097: The armies of the First Crusade (1096-1099) occupied the ancient Byzantine city of Nicea (see also The Crusades).

1243: The Seljuk Turkish army in Asia Minor was decimated by the Mongols.

1409: The Church of Rome entered a "double schism" when Petros Philargos was made Pope Alexander V - along with Pope Gregory XII in Rome and Pope Benedict XII in Avignon, France (see The Struggle For The Papacy; listen also to our Sermon Constantine's Papacy).

1483: Richard III of England began his rule, after deposing his nephew Edward V. Edward and his brother Richard were later murdered.

1541: Francisco Pizarro, Spanish conqueror of Peru, was assassinated in his palace.

1794: The Austrians were defeated by the French at Fleurus, halting their conquest of Belgium.

1843: Hong Kong was proclaimed a British crown colony.

1870: "Christmas" was declared a Federal holiday in the U.S.A.

1917: The first U.S. troops entered battle during the First World War, which began over 2 years earlier, in 1914 (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars).

1936: The first flight of the German Focke-Wulf Fw 61, the first functional helicopter.

1945: The United Nations Charter was signed by 50 nations in San Francisco, succeeding the League of Nations.

1959: The St. Lawrence Seaway, connecting Canadian and U.S. ports on the Great Lakes with the Atlantic Ocean, was opened by Queen Elizabeth II and President Eisenhower.

1974: The Universal Product Code, for automatically price-scanning goods, went into commercial service.

1976: The CN Tower in Toronto, the world's tallest free-standing structure, opened.

1995: Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak survived an assassination attempt unharmed when gunmen sprayed bullets at his armored limousine in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

2003: The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the sodomy laws (as found in the Holy Bible) are unconstitutional in the U.S.A.


Copyright © Wayne Blank