"ON EAGLES’ WINGS MINISTRIES"
Let me begin this issue by thanking all of you for your love and support during 2013. We have crossed over the threshold of a new year, not being sure of what will unfold in the different functions of our government. But we are sure that God’s ultimate intentions for us as Sons of God will be realized and appropriated more profoundly than ever before. Many will continue to awake out of their deep sleep of man’s traditions, to clearly see and understand the spiritual realities that are knocking at our door. Your continued love and support will serve well in getting the word out to many. And Jesus said: “Work, and whatsoever is right, I will give it to you.” Thank you ever so much!
Whatever we plan to build, whether it be a shopping mall, a luxury condominium complex, or a single family home, the process begins with a blueprint. It specifies all the dimensions and style of the structure. In most cases, the amount of materials and even the cost of the project are calculated from the blueprint. God operates on the same principle dating back before the foundation of the world. The plan of salvation is explicitly featured in scripture, and like a silver thread, it can be traced all the way from Adam in the garden to Jesus on the cross. It would seem to us that God makes a bold pronouncement, then, he sets out to figure out all the dynamics involved and the process that brings them to complete fruition. In about B.C. 1913, God said to Abram [before his name was changed]: “Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not their’s, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years.” Genesis 15: 13. Approximately 186 years elapsed before Abram’s seed, as a forerunner was brought as a slave to Egypt and sold to Potiphar, captain of the guard in the Egyptian army. The process began with a young lad who was given the gift of dreams and the interpretation of dreams.
Joseph’s gift became a thorn in the side of his brothers, who sold him as a common slave. But think of this! All of these circumstances and events were brought to bear upon the promise God made to Abram 186 years before. We can only conclude that all the nuts and bolts needed to implement the promise were put in place by God up front, and that nothing would unfold that would be a surprise to him. It was 207 years [about B.C. 1706] after God had made his promise to Abram that his seed would be a stranger in a land that was not theirs, that Jacob and his family entered Egypt. By this time, because of Joseph’s gift of dreams and their interpretation, he was now second only to the Pharaoh in Egypt. One of the points of interest that I find to be intriguing is that God acts on a premise that fits legally into what is acceptable to man based upon their common laws. In such case, Jesus had to have a legal right to David’s throne, and throughout scripture he is called the son of David. For those who claim a pure bloodline was secured by God, out of which Jesus came should read the facts again.
Here is a very short summary of those facts. The harlot Rahab who hid the spies in Jericho and later one of them was a gentile. [speaking broadly] Out of their union was born Boaz, who was a half Jew. He in turn married Ruth from the land of Moab. They fathered Obed, a quarter Jew, who fathered Jesse, the father of David. So there was no pure blood line held in reserve through which Jesus came. Speaking of blood; there is no pure blood line among men. We were bought by the “precious blood” of Jesus Christ, and Paul said that the church was purchased by God’s own blood. Acts 20: 28. So how does God work things out legally based upon what we deem to be legal? We need to revisit this scripture! Notice the language applied here! “And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age [meaning he had just passed his 29th birthday] being (as it was supposed) the son of Joseph.)” Luke 3:23. Notice that it was supposed—a mere conjecture that is not based upon facts, that he was the son of Joseph. Jesus himself raised the question of him being the son of David, which so many throughout Christendom still hold as facts. Did Christ buy into that narrative? Let’s see what his approach was.
“While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying, What think ye of Christ? Whose son is he? They say unto him, The son of David. He saith unto them, How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool? If David then call him Lord, how is he his son? Matthew 22: 41-45. In a rather mild way, Jesus debunked the belief that he was the son of David. In fact, to add a little more intrigue to our study, I suggest that you read the entire ministry of Jesus Christ, throughout the four gospels, and you will notice that not once did he refer to Mary as Mama, Mom, or Mother. Every time he personally referred to her he said “woman.” When his mother, father and brethren came to see him, and he was told of their visit,
He pointedly asked, “Who is my mother, and my father, and my brethren?” He pointed to his disciples and said that they are his mother, his father, and his brethren. Even in the last moments of his life on the cross, he looked at his mother and said, “Woman behold thy son, referring to John.
The fact is that Jesus walked in a human body like any other human being, but he lived and identified with the realm of spirit. His only tie to our humanity was that he became like us to make us like his Father. He became sin who knew no sin, that we might become the righteousness of God in him. He did not take upon himself the nature of angels, but rather the seed of Abraham. Let us lay out his plan of salvation like unfurling a street map and charting the path we wish to travel. Two things of major importance are required down at the building site for construction to begin. Number one is a blueprint and materials for erecting the structure, and this is how God approached the issue.
First of all, he foreknew us: Second, he predestinated us to be conformed to the image of his son: they whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. Romans 8: 30. So here once again are the five vital and most important parts of the redemption story, that was packaged by God himself , before the foundation of the world, and moreover, the entire package was based upon God’s own will and purpose on our behalf. “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.” Ephesians 1:5. “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began.” 2nd Timothy 1: 9. It is important for us to understand that our salvation did not begin when we heard the preaching of the gospel, and responded by walking up to the altar where we repeated the sinners’ prayer, and was later declared to be saved. In many churches at this point, the candidate is baptized in the pool behind the pulpit, and upon emerging from the changing room, he/she is given the right hand of fellowship. I offer a resounding “NO” to all of the above as it pertains to our salvation. All the complexities and moving parts of salvation were settled in Christ before the world began. When the Master came and ministered in person, he opened up to a ruler of the Jews, how salvation works. Jesus was explicit and concise in affirming to Nicodemus: “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again [born of the Spirit from above] he cannot see the kingdom of God.
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. [Why?] Because, That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. [Nicodemus, I know you don’t understand this, but the fact remains] Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.” John 3: 3,5-7. What many do not realize and possibly have not been taught, is that the “born again experience” that Jesus emphasized was not meant to be the end of a process, but rather, the beginning of a process that will come to fruition in the last phase of what Paul mentioned in Romans 8: 30, and that is for us to be glorified. [Like unto his glorious body..Phil. 3:21]
Let us keep in the forefront of our consciousness that birth is essential in the transfer of family traits and human characteristics. One can never partake of human nature out of the adoption process. Perhaps after many years of living with adoptive parents a child will share certain habits and facts of family life. But after living as an adopted child for as many years as we wish to ascribe to this thought, in the end the child at death will still not possess actual family traits. [No matching DNA] This can only be achieved by birth and not by adoption. So the new birth that so many millions across the broad spectrum of Christendom have claimed, was never designed specifically to make bad people good, and secure their mansions in heaven. If this is not the real purpose behind the new birth experience, what is its main purpose where the saints are concerned? Let us offer this observation as we move forward in this study. We are told both in Romans 8 and Romans 12 that we are to be conformed [made like or fashioned after] the image of Christ. But what the church has not been telling us, is the fact this can never be accomplished or realized as a life experience simply by following rules and certain religious dogmas. And yet, as we look upon the inadequacies and failures of God’s people to measure up to these requirements, we either look the other way and pretend that we don’t know about them, or we try to explain them away in a sort of compromise. Even some televangelists, who, at one time laid down some hard rules on living the Christian life, later came back crying, after finding out that their knowledge of the Word and good intentions were not enough to enable them to adhere to God’s law of holiness. We are allowed to look into the master plan of God’s salvation and quickly see what Jesus alluded to in his dialogue with Nicodemus.
There are many cases in which Jesus alluded to truths yet to be unfolded, that the apostles later had to teach. Indeed, they came behind Jesus and unfurled truths that Jesus alluded to only briefly. Listen to Peter in his narrative on what we get from God when we embrace his promises. “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be made partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” 2nd Peter 1: 4. This is the overwhelming truth that Jesus alluded to, when he spoke with Nicodemus. This is what he meant in asserting that unless one is born of water and of the Spirit, one cannot see nor enter into the kingdom of God.
The born again experience is embraced by members of the clergy worldwide. Billy Graham often refers to its true meaning, which is, “to be born from above; Or to be born of the Spirit.” Over the years, while we have heard multiple testimonies and sermons on the born again experience, and watch some saints of God weep for joy as they rehearse their born again experience, and the gigantic turn their life has taken, we seldom, if ever, heard testimonies and sermons on us being made partakers of the divine nature. Because of this vacuum and lack of information of us being partakers of the divine nature, God’s people still live with the mentality of being alienated from God. They still see themselves as sinners still in search of mercy and forgiveness from a God who lives far away, and who is so set against sin, that they must repent every time they attend church, and every night before they retire to bed. Paul did not think that it was necessary for him to struggle day by day, as he tried to live a godly life. The apostle did not see himself as a separate entity from Christ.
In fact, Paul was so sure of his oneness with Christ, that when Christ died upon the cross, Paul declared that “I am crucified with Christ.” That means that I live—but hold it for just a moment! In fact, I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me—or instead of me; and the life I now life in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2: 20 Paul was so wrapped up and persuaded about this truth that he wrote again:
“For ye are dead [not kneeling around the altar and asking to die each time we attend church, an hour before the service is due to begin] and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” Colossians 3: 3,4. Can we actually believe and embrace these truths? Let us observe the tapestry laid out by Paul, adorned with dynamic truths, designed to open our understanding of what we have been discussing throughout this series.
“Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into his death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.” Even before I entered my teenage years, I heard our ministers telling us that after baptism, we should walk in newness of life. That meant, the things we used to do, we’ll do them no more, and they usually offer a long list of things that suddenly became prohibited and off limits to those who recently put on Jesus. But what Paul is saying is that since we were baptized into Christ’s death, the life we thus possess is a new life—his life since we laid down our old life when we were buried with him. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection.
Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin.” Romans 6: 3-7.
These scriptures should erase all doubts from us, and answer all questions that may have lingered in us about these matters. Here is just a thought on the side! Many of us have been taught that baptism as is in water. But we are told in 1st Corinthians 12: 13: “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been made to drink into one Spirit.”
Paul offered this thought! “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word.” Ephesians 5: 25, 26. It is time for us to connect the dots beginning with Christ’s death and resurrection. We were told a moment ago that we were planted together in the likeness of his death, and we shall be in the likeness of his resurrection. Remember that the last process in our salvation is to be glorified. Speaking of the promises made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob we read: “God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second Psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.” Acts 13:33.
But at his baptism in the Jordan, the voice from heaven said: “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” However, the account in Acts speaks of Christ being begotten again by the resurrection process. The same holds true on our behalf, as we read: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” 1st Peter 1:3. Being begotten by Jesus Christ, brings us into God’s family by reason of the new birth which is by the Spirit. And Jesus offers full recognition based upon these divine principles.
“For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of ONE: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me.” Hebrews 2: 11-13. Thus we see that Jesus Christ embraces the concept of our place in his family, and he is not ashamed of us, neither is he forced to make excuses on our behalf. After all, the truth is that as Jesus IS, so are we in this world. 1st John 4: 17.
Let us put one main issue under the microscope for a more thorough analysis. Romans 8:29 clearly states that God’s predestinated will [and purpose] is for us to be conformed to the image of his Son; a process that will actually contribute to Christ’s standing as the “first born.” Here is the logic behind this concept! As long as we fail to take on his image and his likeness, he will remain “the only begotten Son.” If Christ, indeed, is to be the first born among many brethren, or a family of many brothers, it stands to reason that other sons bearing his image must come forth, out from among the body at large. If this were not so, or if this were not possible, Paul would not have inserted the term, “first born among many brethren.” We are told in scripture that we should follow in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, and as grown up sons, we are to occupy until he comes. Till he comes in myriads of himself.
Please be reminded to make your gifts payable to Royce Kennedy and not to the ministry. Thank you!