Joyful greetings to you on this Palm Sunday! Please receive this edited 2013 repost as a word of encouragement during this very special week for us as followers of Jesus Christ. Per usual, I will be taking Resurrection Sunday off in this current case to celebrate my 42nd spiritual birthday. The Lord saying the same, my next post will appear on Sunday, April 28th.
Originally Posted March 29, 2013
My short holiday blog for Resurrection Sunday appears today so that I may respectfully pause to honor the Lord’s triumphant work to save a wretch like me culminating in His powerful resurrection from the dead as I hope all of you will do as well.1 The Lord’s challenge to us who would be faithful in these days of open rebellion by the world against as well as spiritual confusion, adultery and apostasy among those professing to know Him, is to all the more take to heart the benedictory exhortation of the apostle Paul in 1 Timothy 6:11-16; following Christ’s example to the death as we have been called (Philippians 1:27-30; 1 Peter 2:19-23, 3:13-17).
The foregoing is the heart of every aspiring strong man and great woman of God in the image of Jesus Christ! The times we have entered into have been foreordained and told by God through the prophets, the Lord Jesus and His apostles (Mark 13:9-23; Acts 8:1-4). There is nothing we can do to reverse this present course permanently for even when the Lord does send revival to His people in days ahead, it will not be to restore the so-called “good old days” as I write in my book, the Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics.2 It will be the marking out and protection of elect Israel as well as renewing preparation for enduring “the great tribulation” by faithful saints leading up to Christ’s return (Revelation 7, NKJV).
Thus, the wicked wherever they are found fill up the cup of their sins that God in increasing severity judges until finally, He pours out on them the fullness of His wrath to crush them at Christ’s appearing (Revelation 16:17-21, 19:11-21). Meanwhile, the faithful “fight the good fight of faith” (1 Timothy 6:12, NKJV); staying in it until death or the Lord’s appearing and receive as our good end, the promised resurrection to immortality in the likeness of His own we celebrate on Resurrection Sunday (Revelation 20:4-6). A glorious Resurrection Sunday to you, indeed!
1 Read the April 3, 2016 repost the Lord gave me richly exploring the resurrection, God Raises The Dead, under the category, The Faith!
2 The book is available at all major internet booksellers, by order at your favorite brick and mortar bookstore or in the Strong Man Store.
One of the tragic reasons divorce is prevalent in our times is because marriage as God designed it has been so devalued and underappreciated.1 Divinely instituted marriage is unique to the realm of mankind and is far from anything like seriously dating, or “going steady or together” as unmarried relationships were termed in my youth. Its sexual intimacy because of righteousness is also more satisfying than whatever pleasure is derived from the mere physical, self-gratifying acts of the sexual revolution’s resultant “hook up culture.” Though marriage is for mortal human experience by God’s design,2 it fully pictures what is exclusively eternally divine in the concept of oneness.
To be clear from the outset, after each human soul God loves, evil has vigorously targeted for ruin everything God brought into being to bless his mortal creatures to include marriage. For staggering in the announcement of man’s creation is how by a Creator God in voice expressing plurality: “Then God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness;’” (Genesis 1:26a, NKJV). Born again Bible students see in this verse the presence and unity of the One, triune God from eternity--Father, Son and Holy Spirit affirmed by Moses (Deuteronomy 6:4) and later, the Son and Word made flesh (Matthew 28:19; John 1:1-3, 14, 14:7-11)--acting together to create man.
The triune God is the original unity of One and until man was created, the only such unity! The unity of God is an absolute marvel for all ages as each of the three Persons with different roles and responsibilities that make it up equally share the unique divine nature and character while operating together in voluntary, Selfless harmony (John 5:16-23, 10:30-39, 14:15-31). Created in the image and likeness of God, man was designed to enjoy the intimacy of oneness relationship with God and the eventual female version of himself (Genesis 1:27, 2:18-20). When God created and brought her to the man, he immediately understood the fact she had come out of him (Genesis 2:21-23).
There can be no greater display of mortal human unity than God actually reaching into the physical body of Adam to take a part and from it, lovingly fashion his companion--two from one! Now, marriage is God putting the man and the woman back together in a oneness union of correspondence that incorporates their two spirits, souls and bodies purposely made to unite for physical intimacy (Genesis 2:24-25). Like God, the two persons with different roles and responsibilities would operate in nature and character as one.3 And not only was their physical intimacy to be mutually pleasurable, but from it God designed that children would result from the cooperative joining of their bodies.
Enticing man to sin was intended by Satan to first ruin his oneness relationship with God, then his wife (and subsequent children) in the respective spiritual and physical death God had announced would be the outcome of disobedience. Thus, along with man, marriage and family has been under assault from Eden (Genesis 3:1-13)! What the fallen angelic enemy of God and man did not count on was the depths of His love such that He would seek to save His fallen creature and restore our ruined oneness relationship; taking it to its ultimate, eternal end as the Son of God, Jesus Christ later prayed to have become a reality (Genesis 3:14-15; Matthew 18:10-14; John 3:10-17, 17:11, 20-26)!
Marriage as a living picture of divine oneness is so sacred the Lord Jesus figuratively refers to Himself in parables as a “bridegroom” (Matthew 9:14-15, NKJV). If the Lord is a Bridegroom (Male), then who is His bride (female) but all of those that have trusted in Him for salvation; those eagerly and wisely waiting on His return to be married in a celestial wedding ceremony (Matthew 25:1-13; John 3:26-30; 2 Corinthians 11:2; Revelation 19:7-14, 21:9).4 The apostle Paul portrays the Lord as the saving Bridegroom who pays the bride price for His betrothed He expects to remain pure and faithful to Him in oneness until their wedding (1 Corinthians 6:12-20; Ephesians 5:25-33); a cleansing purity He accomplished at great Personal cost (Psalm 22:1-21a; Mark 15:15-35; John 19:28-30)!
Not only did Christ sacrifice Himself to save willing fallen mankind and bring us back into oneness relationship with God, but also a man with his wife in the mortal experience of oneness in marriage as divinely designed. As God makes clear through the prophet Malachi, oneness in mortal marriage was the divine intent from the beginning not just for the experience itself, but also for "godly offspring!" Too, oneness is the reason God is not pleased with a man mistreating his spouse and hates the painful violence of divorce (Malachi 2:13-16, NKJV). Salvation wrought by Christ provides the means through Holy Spirit renewed minds and hearts for two otherwise selfish persons to come and stay together as one in marriage with much forgiveness (Matthew 18:21-35; Ephesians 4:31-32)!
1 See the March 24, 2019 post, Restoring Marriage As God Designed, under the category, The Cause.
2 In three of the four New Testament Gospels the Lord Jesus Christ plainly teaches that marriage is a mortal human experience for this present age only (Matthew 22:23-
33; Mark 12:18-27; Luke 20:27-40). Understanding this, Christian married couples should count every moment together as a precious gift from God and enjoy this
solely mortal experience to the fullest! Read the June 26, 2016 post, Right Thinking About The Afterlife, under the category, Instruction.
3 The Lord leads me to write more fully about His putting male and female with their different roles and responsibilities back together in marriage as one in my book, The
Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics, available at all major internet booksellers, by order at your favorite brick and mortar bookstore or in the Strong Man Store.
4 For those Christian men especially that still wrestle with how a mortal daughter of God could also be literally destined to be an immortal, eternal son, consider how we
mortal and eternal sons of God are also figuratively called the “bride” of Christ to be married in a wedding to live thereafter as His eternal “wife.” The intent of God in
both the former and latter instances is the real familial closeness and glory of spiritual oneness that transcends mortal body types! See the June 19, 2016 repost, Eter-
nal Sons Of God, under the category, Instruction.
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