Message One: Reaching the Highest Peak of the Divine Revelation (1) The Vision of the Age
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  • 2015-05-30,
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EM  Hymns: 750, 948
Scripture Reading: Hab. 3:2a; Acts 26:19; Eph. 1:17; 3:9; Rev. 21:2
Hab 3:2a        O Jehovah, I have heard the report concerning You and am afraid. / O Jehovah, revive Your work / In the midst of the years; …
Acts 26:19     Therefore, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision,
Eph 1:17        That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the full knowledge of Him,
Eph 3:9          And to enlighten all that they may see what the economy of the mystery is, which throughout the ages has been hidden in God, who created all things,
Rev 21:2        And I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
 
I.     Among God’s elect there has always been an aspiration to be revived—Hab. 3:2a; Hosea 6:2; Hag. 2:7; Mal. 3:1; 4:2; Rom. 8:20-22.
Hab 3:2a        O Jehovah, I have heard the report concerning You and am afraid. / O Jehovah, revive Your work / In the midst of the years; …
Hosea 6:2      He will enliven us after two days; / On the third day He will raise us up, / And we will live in His presence.
Hag 2:7          And I will shake all the nations, and the Desire of all the nations will come; and I will fill this house with glory, says Jehovah of hosts.
Mal 3:1          I am about to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me; and suddenly the Lord, whom you seek, will come to His temple. And the Angel of the covenant, whom you desire, He will come, says Jehovah of hosts.
Mal 4:2          But unto you who fear My name will the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in His wings, and you will go forth and leap about like well-fed calves.
Rom 8:20       For the creation was made subject to vanity, not of its own will, but because of Him who subjected it,
Rom 8:21       In hope that the creation itself will also be freed from the slavery of corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
Rom 8:22       For we know that the whole creation groans together and travails in pain together until now.
 
 
II.   We can enter into a new revival by arriving at the highest peak of the divine revelation, the vision of the age, through the ministry of the age:
A.     The particular recovery and work that God is doing in one age is the ministry of that age—cf. Gen. 6:16; 2 Kings 2:1-15.
Gen 6:16        You shall make an opening for light for the ark, and you shall finish it up to a cubit from the top; and you shall put the entrance of the ark in its side; you shall make it with lower, second, and third stories.
2 Kings 2:1    And when Jehovah was about to take up Elijah by a whirlwind into heaven, Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.
2 Kings 2:2    And Elijah said to Elisha, Stay here, for Jehovah has sent me as far as Bethel. And Elisha said, As Jehovah lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you. So they went down to Bethel.
2 Kings 2:3    Then the sons of the prophets who were in Bethel came out to Elisha and said to him, Do you know that Jehovah will take away your master from over your head today? And he said, I too know it; be silent.
2 Kings 2:4    And Elijah said to him, Elisha, stay here, for Jehovah has sent me to Jericho. And he said, As Jehovah lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you. And they came to Jericho.
2 Kings 2:5    And the sons of the prophets who were at Jericho approached Elisha and said to him, Do you know that Jehovah will take away your master from over your head today? And he said, I too know it; be silent.
2 Kings 2:6    And Elijah said to him, Stay here, for Jehovah has sent me to the Jordan. And he said, As Jehovah lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you. So the two of them went on.
2 Kings 2:7    And fifty men from the sons of the prophets went and stood opposite them at a distance, while the two of them stood by the Jordan.
2 Kings 2:8    And Elijah took his mantle and wrapped it together and struck the water; and it parted to this side and that, so that the two of them crossed over on dry ground.
2 Kings 2:9    And when they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha, Ask what I should do for you before I am taken from you. And Elisha said, Let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.
2 Kings 2:10   And he said, You have asked a hard thing. If you see me when I am taken from you, so will it be to you; but if not, it will not be so.
2 Kings 2:11   And as they went on and talked, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared; and they separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.
2 Kings 2:12   And Elisha saw it and cried, My father, my father, the chariot of Israel and its horsemen! And he did not see him anymore. And he grasped his clothes and tore them in two pieces.
2 Kings 2:13   And he picked up Elijah's mantle, which had fallen from him, and returned and stood by the bank of the Jordan.
2 Kings 2:14   And he took Elijah's mantle, which had fallen from him, and struck the water and said, Where is Jehovah, the God of Elijah? And when he also struck the water, it parted to this side and that, and Elisha crossed over.
2 Kings 2:15   And when the sons of the prophets who were at Jericho opposite him saw him, they said, The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha. And they came to meet him and bowed themselves to the ground before him.
B.     In every age there is the vision of that age, and we have to serve God according to the vision of the age—Prov. 29:18; Acts 26:19; Eph. 1:17; 3:9.
Prov 29:18     Where there is no vision, the people cast off restraint; / But happy is he who keeps the law.
Acts 26:19     Therefore, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision,
Eph 1:17        That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the full knowledge of Him,
Eph 3:9          And to enlighten all that they may see what the economy of the mystery is, which throughout the ages has been hidden in God, who created all things,
C.     God’s word reveals to us that in every age He gives only one vision to man:
1.      In order for us to serve God today, our vision must extend all the way from the first vision of Adam in Genesis to the ultimate vision of John in Revelation.
2.      Today we can be in one accord because we have only one vision, an up-to-date, all-inheriting vision, the vision of the eternal economy of God—Job 10:12-13; cf. Eph. 3:9; 1 Tim. 1:3-4.
Job 10:12      You have granted me life and lovingkindness, / And Your visitation has preserved my spirit.
Job 10:13      But You have hidden these things in Your heart; / I know that this is with You:
Eph 3:9          And to enlighten all that they may see what the economy of the mystery is, which throughout the ages has been hidden in God, who created all things,
1 Tim 1:3        Even as I exhorted you, when I was going into Macedonia, to remain in Ephesus in order that you might charge certain ones not to teach different things
1 Tim 1:4        Nor to give heed to myths and unending genealogies, which produce questionings rather than God's economy, which is in faith.
 
III.  In 2 Peter 1:12 the present truth can also be rendered “the up-to-date truth”:
2 Pet 1:12      Therefore I will be ready always to remind you concerning these things, even though you know them and have been established in the present truth.
A.     Although all the truths are in the Bible, through man’s foolishness, unfaithfulness, negligence, and disobedience many truths were lost and hidden from man—cf. 2 Kings 22:8.
2 Kings 22:8   Then Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the scribe, I have found the book of the law in the house of Jehovah. And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, and he read it.
B.     Freshly revealed truths are not God’s new inventions; rather, they are man’s new discoveries; every worker of the Lord should inquire before God as to what the present truth is.
C.     God’s truths are cumulative; later truths do not negate former ones; what we see today are the cumulative revelations of God.
D.     May God be gracious to us that we do not become the castaways of “the present truth”; may we be watchful, and may we not allow the flesh to come in or the self to gain any ground.
 
IV.  The highest peak of the divine revelation given to us by God, the present truth, is the revelation of the eternal economy of God:
A.     The entire Bible, which is the explanation of the eternal economy of God, is the autobiography of the Triune God, seen in the two sections of eternity and on the bridge of time:
1.      In the Old Testament there is the single, but triune, God from eternity past, indirectly moving only with men and among men—John 1:1, 3.
John 1:1        In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
John 1:3        All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him not one thing came into being which has come into being.
2.      He came from eternity into time and with His divinity to enter into humanity to become the incarnated God for His direct move in man, seen in the four Gospels, for the accomplishment of His judicial redemption—vv. 14, 29.
John 1:14       And the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us (and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only Begotten from the Father), full of grace and reality.
John 1:29       The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!
3.      In resurrection He became the compounded God, the all-inclusive life-giving Spirit, seen in the Acts and the Epistles, for the carrying out of His organic salvation—John 1:32, 42; 1 Cor. 15:45b; Phil. 1:19.
John 1:32       And John testified saying, I beheld the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven, and He abode upon Him.
John 1:42       He led him to Jesus. Looking at him, Jesus said, You are Simon, the son of John; you shall be called Cephas (which is interpreted, Peter).
1 Cor 15:45b  … the last Adam became a life-giving Spirit.
Phil 1:19        For I know that for me this will turn out to salvation through your petition and the bountiful supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,
4.      Because of the degradation of the church, He became the intensified God, the sevenfold intensified life-giving Spirit, seen in Revelation 1—20, for the producing of the overcomers—1:4; 3:1; 4:5; 5:6.
Rev 1-20        be omitted.
Rev 1:4          John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from Him who is and who was and who is coming, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne,
Rev 3:1          And to the messenger of the church in Sardis write: These things says He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars: I know your works, that you have a name that you are living, and yet you are dead.
Rev 4:5          And out of the throne come forth lightnings and voices and thunders. And there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God;
Rev 5:6          And I saw in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures and in the midst of the elders a Lamb standing as having just been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.
5.      In eternity future He will be the corporate God, the New Jerusalem, seen in Revelation 21 and 22, for the universal, divine-human incorporation of the processed and consummated Triune God with the regenerated, transformed, and glorified believers as the goal of God’s eternal economy—John 1:51; Rev. 21:3, 22.
Rev 21-22      be omitted.
John 1:51       And He said to him, Truly, truly, I say to you, You shall see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.
Rev 21:3        And I heard a loud voice out of the throne, saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will tabernacle with them, and they will be His peoples, and God Himself will be with them and be their God.
Rev 21:22      And I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb are its temple.
6.      Thus, the central revelation of God and the Lord’s recovery is God becoming the flesh, the flesh becoming the life-giving Spirit, and the life-giving Spirit becoming the sevenfold intensified Spirit to build up the church that becomes the Body of Christ and that consummates the New Jerusalem.
B.     God becoming man that man might become God in life and in nature but not in the Godhead is the essence of the entire Bible, the “diamond” in the “box” of the Bible, the eternal economy of God—Gen. 1:26; John 12:24; Rom. 8:29:
Gen 1:26        And God said, Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of heaven and over the cattle and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.
John 12:24     Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless the grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it abides alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.
Rom 8:29       Because those whom He foreknew, He also predestinated to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the Firstborn among many brothers;
1.      God became man through incarnation by participating in man’s humanity; man becomes God (in life and nature but not in the Godhead) through transformation by participating in God’s divinity—John 1:14; 2 Cor. 3:18:
John 1:14       And the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us (and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only Begotten from the Father), full of grace and reality.
2 Cor 3:18      But we all with unveiled face, beholding and reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord Spirit.
a.      Participating in God’s life—John 3:15; 10:10; Col. 3:4; Rom. 8:10, 6, 11.
John 3:15       That everyone who believes into Him may have eternal life.
John 10:10     The thief does not come except to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life and may have it abundantly.
Col 3:4           When Christ our life is manifested, then you also will be manifested with Him in glory.
Rom 8:10       But if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, the spirit is life because of righteousness.
Rom 8:6         For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace.
Rom 8:11       And if the Spirit of the One who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who indwells you.
b.      Participating in God’s nature—Eph. 1:4; 2 Pet. 1:4.
Eph 1:4          Even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world to be holy and without blemish before Him in love,
2 Pet 1:4        Through which He has granted to us precious and exceedingly great promises that through these you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption which is in the world by lust.
c.      Participating in God’s mind—Eph. 4:23; Phil. 2:5.
Eph 4:23        And that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind
Phil 2:5          Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus,
d.      Participating in God’s being—2 Cor. 3:18b; Eph. 3:8.
2 Cor 3:18b    … are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord Spirit.
Eph 3:8          To me, less than the least of all saints, was this grace given to announce to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ as the gospel
e.      Participating in God’s image—2 Cor. 3:18a; Rom. 8:29.
2 Cor 3:18a    But we all with unveiled face, beholding and reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord, …
Rom 8:29       Because those whom He foreknew, He also predestinated to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the Firstborn among many brothers;
f.       Participating in God’s glory—v. 30; Heb. 2:10.
Rom 8:30       And those whom He predestinated, these He also called; and those whom He called, these He also justified; and those whom He justified, these He also glorified.
Heb 2:10        For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and through whom are all things, in leading many sons into glory, to make the Author of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
g.      Participating in God’s sonship—Eph. 1:5; Rom. 8:23; Heb. 2:10-11.
Eph 1:5          Predestinating us unto sonship through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will,
Rom 8:23       And not only so, but we ourselves also, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan in ourselves, eagerly awaiting sonship, the redemption of our body.
Heb 2:10        For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and through whom are all things, in leading many sons into glory, to make the Author of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
Heb 2:11        For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of One, for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brothers,
h.      Participating in God’s manifestation—Rom. 8:19.
Rom 8:19       For the anxious watching of the creation eagerly awaits the revelation of the sons of God.
i.       To bear God’s likeness—1 John 3:2.
1 John 3:2      Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not yet been manifested what we will be. We know that if He is manifested, we will be like Him because we will see Him even as He is.
j.       To be Godkind—God’s species—John 1:12; Rom. 8:14, 16.
John 1:12       But as many as received Him, to them He gave the authority to become children of God, to those who believe into His name,
Rom 8:14       For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
Rom 8:16       The Spirit Himself witnesses with our spirit that we are children of God.
2.      This divine-human romance is the subject of the entire Bible, the content of God’s economy, and the secret of the entire universe—S. S. 1:1; 6:13:
S.S. 1:1         The Song of Songs, which is Solomon's.
S.S. 6:13       Return, return, O Shulammite; / Return, return, that we may gaze at you. / Why should you gaze at the Shulammite, / As upon the dance of two camps?
a.      Christ is divine and human, and His transformed lover is human and divine; they are the same in life and nature, perfectly matching each other.
b.      The Triune God, consummated to be the Husband, and the tripartite man, transformed to be the bride, are to be one couple, a corporate, great God-man—Rev. 21:2, 9.
Rev 21:2        And I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
Rev 21:9        And one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and spoke with me, saying, Come here; I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.
3.      God and man will become one entity, and that one entity is the mingling of divinity with humanity, which will consummate in the New Jerusalem, the conclusion of the entire Bible.
 
V.   “I hope that the saints in all the churches throughout the earth, especially the co-workers and the elders, will see this revelation and then rise up to pray that God would give us a new revival—a revival which has never been recorded in history”—Life-study of 1 and 2 Chronicles, p. 15.
 
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