A PECULIAR PEOPLE
A PRIME PEOPLE - SONS OF THE ATOMIC AGE
"But ye are...a peculiar people..." (1 Pet 2:9).
In conclusion of this series, we will draw once again from one portion of the definition of peculiar treasure and peculiar people. The Greek, peripoiesis, means an acquisition...preservation. It comes from peripoieomai, meaning, to make around oneself, i.e. acquire (buy). (Strong's Exhaustive Concordance)
The peculiar ones have grown accustom to the pillar of fire and thick darkness; for it is the habitation of their God wherein they dwell. It has not been uncommon for their circumstances to be very dark and extremely difficult; but even in the midst of such adversity, their inner man remains in His marvelous light, with their single eye fixed upon the finished work. It is in this weaving room of fire and thick clouds where they have come to know about being a part of the Body by which Christ clothes Himself.
He is making us around Himself, as the word peculiar implies. We are His trappings, the dense cloud that covers Him, concealing His glory for a season. With this understanding set before us, perhaps it is more easily seen why "He made darkness his secret place; His pavilion round about Him were dark waters and thick clouds of the skies." (Psa 18:11).
While Christ temporarily clothes Himself with the pavilions of our flesh, He is at work spinning our frames out of the same heavenly substance from whence He came, which is the fire of His Father and our Father. From flaming threads He weaves His celestial robe. By the Spirit we are made in His express image, not in the image of the first man who is of the earth, but of the Last Man who is the Lord from heaven. We are His workmanship unto good works (Eph 2:10), and I might add -- works speak of manifestations. That which He has made around Himself, He has kept, ready to be revealed in the last time (1 Peter 1:4-5).
Although reserved for a time in God's celestial archives, His secret treasure, His Peculiar ones, His Sons, will not be hidden forever. There is a time for them to work the good works for which they were called. It is their 'manifest destiny'. We do not know the exact time, for it has not been given to us; but knowing the season, the time must be near. Furthermore, when the veil is removed from men's eyes, we shall appear with Him. "When the LORD shall build up Zion, He shall appear in His glory" (Psa 102:16). Until then, He appears only to those in the recesses of the most Holy Place of the tabernacle. "Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of God." (Exo 40:34 & 2 Chr 5:14).
His Glory has filled His house, however, "...it does not yet APPEAR...: but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall SEE HIM AS HE IS" (1 John 3:2).
If we are planning to appear with Him -- we must see Him as He is. It is as simple as that. If we see Him as a failure -- as anything less than the Savior of all He died for -- we can't expect to appear with Him, for with such obscured vision, we have not yet fully perceived Him. Those who appear with Him are those who are like Him in the fulness of His abounding love, mercy, grace, and judgment.
Let me ask, is our vision of His finished work sufficient to minister reconciliation and salvation to all men, regardless of what they have done? When we find them in the midst of the lake of fire, what will be our word to them? Heated coals of condemnation, or words of love unto salvation? If we cannot find the love of Christ to minister God's saving grace, it is a sure bet we are not seeing Jesus as He is.
It would be a disaster for Him to bring forth people with such limited vision to reconcile and save the world. The job would never get done. Rather than going to the utmost to save them, they would rejoice in the suffering of men who would not, or could not, measure up to their own stringent creeds. Such will not appear with Him in His glory. Their vision, or lack of it, disqualifies them. Make no mistake about it -- they are servants and not sons. It may not be known by everyone; but one of the very first revelations to be held by a son of God is the Good News of the Salvation of All.
With the deception that God will lose most of His creation to either eternal damnation or annihilation bracing their minds, how could Jesus have them ruling with Him? It's out of the question. People of this mind-set would quickly invoke another insurrection, like we see today, and take charge of things. They would gather a few people around themselves for salvation rather than Christ, and condemn the rest to hell. Thus, the spirit and mind of Joseph's half-brothers.
Those who see Him as He is will be brought with Him. Only those who are bone of His bone and flesh of His flesh -- His Peculiar Treasure -- will appear with Him. He is not interested in man's pomp and vigor, his religious dogmas, good works, spiritual facades, or anything else he can sew together as fig leaves. Ah, but those who stand daily in this place called holiness -- they see Him as He is and are covered with His flaming splendor, a coat made by the work of His own hands (Gen 37:3).
Being clothed upon with such glory, and with the living word in our mouths, He sends us forth to reconcile the world, the whole world (2nd Cor 5:18-19). Moreover, "He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that He might fill A-L-L things" (Eph 4:10). And fill all things -- He will do! There's no question about it; for He finished it before He started it. If you don't believe it, be patient for a time and watch His Peculiar People at work. You will see that finished work come to pass as it bursts open in glorious reality. Praise God!
More than a small number of men and women today believe they have the word of reconciliation; but their word testifies otherwise. They lay claim to Sonship, while denying the very ministry to which the Sons of God are called. They falsely maintain that the Sons of God will fail in their mission of ministering reconciliation and salvation to all. Due to their skewed vision, they serve a small god who is not sovereign enough to bring about His will of all being saved, or else, one who won't do it. Furthermore, without regard to holy things and the sanctuary of God, they barge in with the smell of death upon their garments. They venture into sacred areas and broadcast their dead dogmas where angels fear to tread. Such are not the Sons of God we know. They have a clear vision of their calling, and will not cease from pursuing it until there is not one man left in hell.
Men of understanding, however, tremble at the prospect of standing in the midst of God's glory and opening their mouths. The place from where they stand and speak is Holy. It is the most Holy Place, and anyone who is out of order and ventures therein is living dangerously. It has become a serious matter to all those who stand in the midst of the Holy of holies.
We saw this so clearly here in the Assembly of the Lord in Alamogordo this past summer (July 24-26, 1998). Rather than people contending to be heard, it was the exact opposite. They were a peculiar bunch who preferred the Lord over themselves.
Those meetings were peculiar in several ways. For one, they commenced eight days after the 53rd anniversary of the detonation of the first atomic bomb; which was July 16, 1945 just north of Alamogordo. Since that day, the world has never been the same.
That fiery blast changed the elements. Unbreakable atoms were torn apart while sand fused, forming a new substance called Trinitite. Trinitite is the name given to the greenish, glassy chunks of melted sand which covered the ground following the blast. The heat was so intense (millions of degrees) that it vaporized the 100 foot steel tower holding the bomb and melted the sand underneath. This fire vaporized one thing (men's steel towers of religious laws), while it crystalized another (the man).
Trinitite, which is found nowhere else on earth, gets its name from the place the bomb was detonated -- Trinity Site. It is like our God who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, yet the Trinity is inseparably fused into One. And with the intense heat with which God's devastating glory in His Sons is to be manifested, the inhabitants of the earth will likewise be fused together, forming a new element. Perhaps we could call them Trinitites. The name would fit; but as it is today, I am sure they will continue to be called the children of God.
That first bomb was identical to the one dropped on Nagasaki, Japan in August of the same year, which ended World War II. It was called the Fat Man. Interestingly, the meaning of Alamogordo, the city known for that detonation, and is also the city where the Lord assembled us 53 years and eight days from the original date, means Fat Cottonwood. And we do know that trees in scripture generally refer to men.
That first bomb, and the two succeeding it, were used for mass destruction; but the explosion, or manifestation of the Sons of God, will bring reconstruction, or rather, a reconstitution. Acts 3:21 speaks of the restitution of all things; but translated properly the word should be reconstitution. The old man, Adam, will not be restored to his former state of being; but he will be reconstituted, fused with that which was left out, or removed from him when placed as the first man of the earth. And that which was lacking in him was the Spirit of Christ. Being fused with the Spirit from above (reconstituted), he will be a new creation. For him to be merely restored to what he was would sell him short of the glory he would have in Jesus.
We can't help from noticing the numbers I've been mentioning, 53 years and 8 days. Daniel Sutton, our dear friend, and one of those who shared during the Assembly in Alamogordo, called this morning and shared some enlightening points about the number 53. He brought to my attention that it is an odd number, but he said it is more than just an odd number. It is also a prime number. A prime number cannot be divided by any number other than itself and the number it is made from, the number 1. When we divide 53 by 53 the dividend is 1, and when we divide 53 by 1, it is 53. Like God, which is represented by 1, His body of reconciling Sons are represented by 53. This number is Peculiar, it is Prime, it is Odd, it is a number that speaks of a very Peculiar People who are treasured enough to shut up until the appointed time.
Recalling the meaning of the Hebrew word for Peculiar People (Cegullah; "to shut up; wealth as closely shut up"), we can see that it echoes this uniqueness. In Christ, this number has great worth and is closely shut up. It can't be meddled with. Only God, who is number 1, can enter its domain; for each component of the prime number is a product of God Himself. It remains intact, undisturbed by all other numbers. Outside influences cannot affect it.
Again, 53 is a number that is Odd, it is Prime, it is Peculiar -- and the Assembling of the Lord in Alamogordo was one of those Peculiar, Prime Time Live productions. But you can be sure -- it was in Christ and not a preplanned TV program. It may have been preplanned, but not by the scheming mind of man.
For many of us it marked a New Beginning, as the number 8 suggests. I cannot say how much farther it has reached than the 150 to 200 who were assembled here. For that matter, there may have been exactly (2)153, which speaks of the Sons of God and the Salvation of All. Regardless, if our mail is any indication, it is continuing to touch those who have heard and seen the audio and video tapes.
I cannot say whether or not the assembly marked the new beginning for anything else. I would not be so presumptuous to assume such. Time will tell. Nevertheless, if those three days last year were significant of what happened 53 years and 8 days before, I can conclude one thing; there will not be another testing here in Alamogordo where man's steel tower was vaporized and his sand fused together forming Trinitite. This is not to say there will never be any future meetings held here, that is for God to say. But the test was proven successful, and the next time the Fat Man is used, it will be over all the cities of the earth where mass destruction of carnality will be seen. There will be the blast of Godfire like the world has never known. Sodom and Gomorrah, in the natural, is a mere example of what to expect at the manifestation of the Sons of God.
In such an explosion of God's Glory, the heavens of man's schemes shall pass away with a great noise, the elements of all their works shall melt with fervent heat, the foundation of their earth shall be burned up (2 Pet 3:10). Furthermore, the fire of God's Sons shall be a plague to the people that have fought against life and His own. Their carnal ways shall consume away while they stand upon their feet. Their lusting eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their false tongues shall consume away in their mouths (Zech 14:12). In their place will come a new heaven and earth. There will be no more the unsettled sea; but there will be a sea of glass mingled with fire.
Instead of standing on the shifting sands, their foundation will be the Rock, the Lord their God. It will be Him in whom they trust. Their works will all be of Christ. The sockets of their eyes will be filled with the single eye of righteousness. And their words will be pure words, tried in the furnace of fire seven times (Psa 12:6).
This, dear friends, we can expect when the Lord comes as a thief in the night and ignites the heavens and earth with His holy fire of brimstone. It won't be as a test in the middle of the desert where no lives are found. No not at all. It will be in the midst of the world which is teaming with multitude billions.
Indeed, 53 years from that fateful day that changed the world. Now we live in the era that will change the world again; but this time, the change is unto Godliness. It is unto Christ that the change is made.
Before continuing, let us draw our attention again to this number 53. The number itself is not used alone in the scriptures, so we don't have a meaning given in that sense. However, the two numbers, 50 and 3, are commonly used, and some light can be derived from each. Bible scholars agree that fifty is the number of jubilee or total deliverance. It speaks of the consummation of time that holds men in bondage.
This deliverance is not for just a select few, but for ALL. At the time of Jubilee, on the 50th year, everyone was set free, bar none. Until that time there was widespread buying and selling of land and slaves, monies were loaned with interest rates applied; but when Jubilee arrived -- all debts were erased, all lands reverted back to the original owners or their families, and (3)ALL SLAVES WERE FREED -- JUBILEE!
E.W. Bullinger says this about the number THREE:
"In this number we have quite a new set of phenomena. We come to the first geometrical figure. Two straight lines cannot possibly enclose any space, or form a plane figure; neither can two plane surfaces form a solid. Three lines are necessary to form a plane figure; and three dimensions of length, breadth, and height, are necessary to form a solid. Hence three is the symbol of the cube -- the simplest form of solid figure. As two is the symbol of the square, or plane contents (x2), so three is the symbol of the cube, or solid contents (x3).
"Three, therefore, stands for that which is solid, real, substantial, complete, and entire.
"All things that are specially complete are stamped with this number three.
"Gods attributes are three. omniscience, omnipresence, and omnipotence.
"There are three great divisions completing time -- past, present, and future.
"Three persons, in grammar, express and include all the relationships of mankind.
"Thought, word, and deed, complete the sum of human capability.
"Three degrees of comparison complete our knowledge of qualities.
"The simplest proposition requires three things to complete it; i.e., the subject, the predicate, and the copula.
"Three propositions are necessary to complete the simplest form of argument -- the major premise, the minor, and the conclusion.
"Three kingdoms embrace our ideas of matter -- mineral, vegetable, and animal.
"When we turn to the Scriptures, this completion becomes Divine, and marks Divine completeness or perfection.
"Three is the first of four perfect numbers.
"Three denotes divine perfection."
(Number in Scripture, by E.W. Bullinger).
Hence, the number 3 coupled with 50, we have God's Completion, God's Divine Perfection in His Peculiar Sons who initiate Deliverance for All.
During those three days of assembled meetings, eight days after the fifty-third anniversary, it was clear that God was fine-tuning and adjusting His Fat Man. For one, as a natural example, the audio system was not the best; but the kingdom technicians met it head-on and were able to remedy the problem. Brother Eby related what he saw in this -- that the Lord was fine-tuning His word throughout the Body so everyone could hear, and there would be no mistake in what the Spirit is saying today. Habakkuk was told to make the word clear: "And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and MAKE IT PLAIN upon tables, that he may run that readeth it" (Hab 2:2).
The word ministered last July was clear. People's views and attitudes toward one another were aligned and made right. There may have been one or two who came with contention in their hearts, which is to be expected; for every time the Sons of God present themselves before the Lord, Satan comes among them (Job 1:6). Even so, they posed no problem.
During this assembly, as with the test of the first atomic bomb, the steel tower of ironclad, rigid, unmovable, adamic doctrines set in religious concrete were vaporized, so to speak. At the brightness of Christ's appearing they seemed to have disappeared from men's minds. They have no part with the Prime number of 53. This is not to say that everyone present had every particle of impure doctrines burned up and consumed; but it certainly appeared as such.
I know some feel that they missed out by not being with us, but not so. Untold numbers of those around the world who were not in the physical assembly are solidly joined to Christ's body of Peculiar People. Whether you were here or on the other side of the earth -- God's arm is not shortened. He was doing as much throughout the entirety of His body as He was doing in this small smattering in Alamogordo.
Isn't it wonderful that it is neither here nor there, with this group or that group, where our union in Christ is made? It is right in the midst of each of us. Indeed, it is wonderful to be among the saints, especially when the Spirit of our Lord moves in a mighty way; but locality has nothing to do with our relationship with Him and Spiritual advancement. Praise God! We don't have to go to the deserts of New Mexico or to any high mountain in the world to find our Lord! He is neither here nor there -- He is in us all.
God's Peculiar People, like Moses, Abraham, Joseph, David, Elijah, and the many others, are shut up, sealed, and reserved on the backside of the desert. They are an acquisition of high value, and He is making them around Himself, arraying Himself with the priceless jewels of His Kingdom. And He is not doing it in the open for the whole world to see.
He clothes Himself with dark pavilions and thick clouds, hiding Himself for a season. Oh, but when the hour comes, each pavilion joined together as one, the true mansion and city of God, will descend from the heavens for all to see. The clouds, you and me, that once hid Him will part and rain His glory upon every soul. No longer will the Peculiar Ones be held back from a world which anxiously awaits their glorious appearing. Yet, for a little time we shall wait while the Weaver's shuttle pounds, compacts, and joins us all together as His flaming robe of righteousness.
As we are clothed upon by fire, and God is clothed upon by us, we remove all those things that hinder, especially the ornaments of religious persuasions. "And the children of Israel stripped themselves of their ornaments by the mount Horeb" (Exo 33:6). The Hebrew word for ornaments in this verse is defined as, "...trappings; finery...an outfit; specifically a headstall" (Strong's).
Praise God for the torrid places from where we hear His earth-shaking voice, and where we strip ourselves of every vestige of religious finery. Such trappings of sparkling glitter lose their appeal in the Light of Christ. The worth of that which the churches had outfitted us fades. Rituals, programs, specials, musical entertainment, pretty girls dancing and swishing in the aisles, crowd drawing speakers, and the likes are shucked like an ear of corn. Every religious fig leaf is shed and goes up in smoke.
But most of all, THE HEADSTALLS are stripped from us. The headstall is a part of a horse's bridle or halter that encircles the head. What are the headstalls we might find encircling the heads of Christians today? Could it be the legalism of the law, dogmas, creeds, tenants of faith, and doctrines that wrap about their thoughts, warping and squeezing sound truths from their minds?
The Jews had phylacteries for which Jesus admonished them for their outward show of piety and devotion (Mat 23:5), and they are commonly emulated today. People of all faiths may not place scripture texts in pouches and strap them to their foreheads as did the Pharisees; but their minds are bound and braced by the laws and doctrines of their particular church and religious persuasions of choice.
Such mind-instilled phylacteries have no place with the Sons of God. They serve no purpose to those who are led by the Spirit. We do not deny that for a season, and for some, they served a purpose(4). And like a colt before its freewill is broken and made ready for the King's service, the laws of dos and don'ts have their place, when applied properly. However, when the age of maturity in Christ is reached, they should not be "...as the horse or as the mule which have no understanding, Whose trappings include bit and bridle to hold them in check..." (Psa 32:9 NASB).
Once they become of age, their guide should be the anointing that abides within and not a man or woman spurring them on with sharp creeds. Never should the Sons of God allow men to bridle them and direct their steps in the ways of traditional religion. There should always be the leading of the Spirit rather than the goading and prodding of men's dictates while stringent laws compass their minds. Only to the rebellious does the law have a place. And though it does, we should know that the law is not the end of the matter; but rather, Christ is the end of the law (Rom 10:4). Moreover, it is due to Him that the ornaments, the phylacteries of religion, can be stripped from our lives and out of our minds.
After this is done, it is then that He decks us with His own ornaments. He said: "I decked thee also with ornaments..." (Ezek 16:11). This, of course, is being adorned with the mind of Christ. In place of the outward show of godliness, Christ is manifested. That which comes in the form of forced servitude and legalism is replaced with true Godliness. It is no longer doing things with attempt to BE a Son of God. It is because of WHO we BE that we DO those things that are characteristic of a Son. It is not our efforts in the world that makes a Son of God, but it is due God's work in our being that makes us such. It is afterwards that we do those things which are indicative of a Son, not before.
When the ornaments of our minds are removed and replaced with those of Christ's, then are we not Christ beings? It is more than just being Christ's, but Christ beings. Yes, indeed! They are a peculiar people and highly valued.
This is a serious hour in which we live, and it is time, Brethren, to become serious. It is time to rid ourselves of ornaments and put off our religious shoes. Although they may have served a purpose for a season, it is not so today. That with which we were shod had once carried us across the searing sands; but the place whereon we now stand is holy ground (Exo 3:5). It has no place for our theological sandals, or Egyptian ideologies.
Again, "And the children of Israel stripped themselves of their ornaments by the mount Horeb" (Exo 33:6). When we see God's glory in the midst of our desolation and hear His word resounding from our flaming bush, we gladly lay down the unholy tenets of faith and lifeless rituals. They lose their attraction once we see the glory of His truth and feast upon the living word of God.
Such things are not easily laid down, especially when we find ourselves in desolate places. However, when God's fire is seen and His voice thunders from on high, it is another matter. We turn and joyfully strip ourselves of every parcel and post. Praise the name of the Lord for Sinai, Mount Horeb, desolation, fire, and especially for His peace that passes understanding in the midst of it all! The victory is ours!
Elwin R. Roach
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2. 100: Sons of God
50: Jubilee, Deliverance for All
3: Divine Completion
3. "To hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death; To declare the name of the LORD in Zion, and his praise in Jerusalem; When the people are gathered together, and the kingdoms, to serve the LORD." (Psa 102:20-22)
4. "Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient..." (1 Tim 1:9).