Scripture Reading: Ezek. 1:26-27; Gen. 1:26; Acts 7:56;
Phil. 2:9-11; Heb. 2:9; 6:20; Rev. 3:21; Rom. 5:17, 21
I. In the Bible there is a mysterious thought concerning the relationship between God and man (Gen. 1:26; 1 John 3:2b; Rev. 4:3a; 21:11b):
A. The Bible reveals the resemblances between God and man in their images and likenesses (Gen. 1:26; 18:2-13; Dan. 7:13-14; Acts 7:56; Rom. 5:14; 8:29; Col. 1:15; 2 Cor. 3:18; Phil. 3:21; 1 John 3:2b; Rev. 4:3a; 21:11b).
B. Man was not created according to his own kind; God created man according to God’s kind (Gen. 1:26-27).
C. God became a man to produce God-man kind; as believers in Christ, we are God-man kind, God-men (John 1:1, 12-14; 12:24).
D. God’s desire is to become the same as man is and to make man the same as He is (1 John 3:2b):
1. God’s intention is to work Himself in Christ into us, making Himself the same as we are and making us the same as He is (Eph. 3:17a).
2. God’s economy is to make Himself man and to make us, His created beings, God, so that He is God “man-ized” and we are man “God-ized.”
II. In Ezekiel 1:26 the One on the throne has the appearance of a man:
A. The One sitting on the throne is not only God but also man; He is the God-man, the man-God, the mingling of God and man (Acts 7:56).
B. There is a twofold significance to the fact that the One sitting on the throne has the appearance of a man:
1. There is a connection between Ezekiel 1:26 and Genesis 1:26:
a. God created man in His image to express Him and with His authority to represent Him; this was according to His purpose (vv. 26-27; Eph. 3:11).
b. God’s purpose in creating man in His image and according to His likeness was that man would receive Him as life and express Him (Gen. 1:26-27; 2:9).
c. God’s intention in giving man dominion is to subdue God’s enemy, Satan, to recover the earth, and to bring the kingdom of God to the earth (1:26, 28; Matt. 6:10, 13).
2. Through incarnation God became a man; He lived, died, resurrected, and ascended as a man; and now as the One on the throne He is still a man (John 6:62; Acts 7:56).
C. The appearance of the man on the throne has two aspects; His upper part, from the loins upward, looks like electrum, and His lower part, from the loins downward, looks like fire (Ezek. 1:27):
1. The upper part signifies His nature and disposition; according to His nature and disposition, the One on the throne looks like electrum.
2. The lower part is for moving; the appearance of fire from the loins downward signifies the Lord’s appearance in His move.
III. Through His crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension, the Lord Jesus was brought to the throne (Acts 2:36; Phil. 2:5-11; Heb. 2:9):
A. God has always been the Lord, but now a man is on the throne as the Lord (Rev. 4:2-3; 5:6).
B. After the Lord Jesus was crucified and buried, God resurrected Him and set Him at His right hand, making Him the Lord of all the universe (Phil. 2:9-11):
1. As God, the Lord was the Lord all the time (Luke 1:43; John 11:21; 20:28), but as man, He was made the Lord in His ascension after He brought His humanity into God in His resurrection; in His ascension He was made the Lord of all to possess all (Acts 2:33, 36; 3:15; 10:36).
2. The God-exalted Jesus, the Ruler of the kings of the earth, is the Ruler over all the ones who are in power; He is the chief Ruler in the divine government for the fulfillment of God’s eternal plan (Rev. 1:5).
C. As the Pioneer and Forerunner, the Lord Jesus cut the path to the throne and led the way to the throne (Heb. 6:20; 2:10):
1. He became a man, and as a man, He went to the throne (Rev. 3:21).
2. This indicates that He is not the only man destined for the throne; rather, He has cut the path so that we may follow.
3. God intends to bring us into glory and to set us on the throne (22:3-5).
IV. God’s intention is to work on man in order that man can be on the throne (Psa. 8:4-8; Rev. 3:21):
A. God’s mind is on man; He wants man to express Him and to exercise His authority (Psa. 8:4, 6; Gen. 1:26).
B. God desires to manifest Himself through man and to reign through man.
C. God’s goal is to bring us to the throne; His desire is to make us people of the throne:
1. God will not be satisfied until we are on the throne; He cannot receive the full glory until we are brought to the throne (Rev. 22:3-5).
2. God’s kingdom cannot come in full until we are on the throne.
3. God’s enemy will not be subdued until we are on the throne.
D. God desires to bring us to the throne because of the rebellion of Satan against God’s throne (Isa. 14:12-14):
1. The greatest difficulty God faces in the universe is that His throne has been opposed and attacked by rebel forces.
2. In his rebellion against God’s throne, Satan intended to exalt his throne and thereby to intrude upon God’s authority.
3. From the time of Satan’s rebellion until now, there has been a dispute regarding authority; much of what is happening on earth today is an expression of Satan’s resistance to God’s throne.
4. God’s intention is to cast Satan down and to redeem many of those taken captive by Satan and to bring them to His throne (Rev. 3:21).
5. There needs to be a people who have been gained by God so that through them the authority of God can be executed and the kingdom of God can come to the earth (11:15; 12:10).
6. We should desire to reign—to exercise authority for God—and to enjoy the blessing of reigning for God (20:4, 6).
E. The overcomers will be on the throne with Christ as His co-kings (3:21):
1. Christ is on the throne, and they also will be on the throne.
2. Christ has all the authority, and the overcomers will share in this authority to rule over the nations (Matt. 28:18; Rev. 2:26-27).
V. In order to be brought to the throne, we need to experience the humanity of Jesus with its virtues and to reign in life (Eph. 4:1-2, 20; Matt. 11:29; Rom. 5:17, 21):
A. If we would have the proper human virtues, we need the humanity of Jesus (Eph. 4:1-2):
1. As believers, we have Christ with all His human virtues dwelling in us to be our humanity (Col. 1:27):
a. Every aspect of our daily walk should conform to the Lord’s humanity in our spirit (Rom. 8:4).
b. As we live under the Lord’s ruling and experience Christ’s humanity, we will never be out of balance; rather, everything will be properly proportioned.
2. We need to eat Christ as the meal offering to become the reproduction of Christ and to live the life of a God-man (Lev. 2:9-10; 6:14-18; Luke 22:19; John 6:57; 1 Cor. 10:17).
B. God’s complete salvation is for us to reign in life by the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness (Rom. 5:17, 21):
1. We have been regenerated with a divine, spiritual, heavenly, kingly, and royal life; this life enables us to reign as kings (John 3:3-6).
2. In practice, to reign in life is to be under the ruling of the divine life:
a. Christ is a pattern of reigning in life by being under the ruling of the divine life of the Father (Matt. 8:9; John 18:11; Phil. 2:8).
b. When we are under the ruling of the divine life, we have the sense that we are enthroned as kings to reign over all things (Rom. 5:17).
3. To reign in life is to conquer, subdue, and rule over Satan, the world, sin, the flesh, ourselves, all kinds of insubordination, and all the environmental circumstances (8:35, 37).
4. If we would reign in life, we need to continually receive the abundance of grace, the fullness of the enjoyment of God (5:17, 21):
a. We need to come again and again to the divine source and open ourselves from the depths of our being to be filled with God as grace (Heb. 4:16).b. The more we receive the abundance of grace, the more we reign in life (John 1:16; Rom. 5:17, 21).