Gentile World Power
By faith the walls of
compassed about seven days (Heb. 11: 30).
The historical account of the destruction of
Moses at this time was on the far side of the desert tending
sheep. He had previously appeared to
All of these events foreshadow past, present, and future
experiences of Christ and the nation of Israel.
Christ at the present time is in the far country (heaven) caring for the
sheep (Christians). He is the Great
Shepherd portrayed in the twenty-third Psalm.
He appeared to
Pharaoh and his armed forces were overthrown in the Red Sea following the Exodus from
The One Who is greater than Moses will lead the Israelites out
from a worldwide dispersion, and the One Who is greater than Joshua will lead
the Israelites into the
Victory Through Faith
According to our text, “By faith the
walls of Jericho fell down …” The Israelites under Joshua had
received certain instructions from the Lord concerning the conquest and
destruction of Jericho (Joshua 6: 1ff). The Israelites acted
upon God’s promise to Joshua that the city had been given into his hand, and
the Israelites under Joshua followed God’s instructions concerning the conquest
and destruction of
God had instructed the Israelites to march around the city of
The numbers “six” and “seven” are of marked significance in this account, as are numbers elsewhere in
Scripture. “Six” is man’s number, and “seven” is God’s number.
Man has been
allotted six days, six thousand years (2 Peter 3: 8; cf. Ex. 31:
12-17); but the
seventh day, the seventh one thousand-year period, belongs to the Lord. Six days, six thousand years, will run their
course; and at the conclusion of six days, on the seventh day, the antitype of
the destruction of
The present world system, likewise, has been marked for
destruction from the very beginning; and each day, each, one thousand-year
period which passes, moves the impending destruction one day nearer. We are now living very near the sixth day,
with the seventh day in the immediate future.
This present world system is, as it were, existing at a point very near
the end of the terminal march around the city.
The judgments of the Great Tribulation, occurring at the end of the
sixth day, await the present system; and its destruction will occur at the
beginning of the seventh day, following the return if
is near at hand when “the kingdom of the world” will become “the kingdom
of our Lord, and of his Christ” (Rev. 11: 15, ASV). For ages the
kingdom has belonged to the Gentile nations of the earth, with Satan and his
angels ruling from the heavens over the earth.
Satan is the “god of this world [‘age’]”
(2 Cor. 4: 4).
He is the present ruler over the “kingdoms of the world” (Luke 4: 5, 6). And throughout
history - especially the history of
Since the inception of the nation of
The word of God remains in force. Consequently,
Note that both the heavenly and earthly seed of Abraham are in view in Gen 22: 17.
The future destiny of
The “gate” has to do with the key point in the conquest of a city or realm. “Possessing the gate” is equivalent to possessing control. The possession in store for the Church [of the firstborn]* is heavenly. Satan and his angels are presently in control, but they
are to be put down (cf. Eph. 6: 11ff; Heb. 3:
1; Rev. 12: 7- 12). The possession in store for
[* See Heb. 12: 17 and context. – Ed.]
Following the Exodus from
Ensuing events in the world during nearly 3,500 years of man’s
history following Moses’ announcement to the Assyrian Pharaoh in
In the interim, from the announcement during Moses’ day until
the announcement during the days of the coming of the Son of Man, a main thrust
of Satan’s attack is centered on the nation of
Within this framework of thought concerning
The Lord Jesus Christ is today seated
at the right hand of His Father, removed from the sphere of Satan’s dominion. Thus, Satan’s attack on Christ must come
through the Church. But once the [the faithful from amongst the] Church has been removed, preceding the Tribulation,*
the centre of Satan’s attack on earth will, of necessity, be directed toward
[* Note God’s conditional promise of escape: “Because thou hast kept the word of my patience [endurance], I will also keep thee from the hour of temptation [of trial], which will come upon all the world [inhabited earth], to try them that swell upon the earth:” (Rev. 3: 10). “Take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day comes upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass…” (Luke 21: 34-36).]
“Sonship, ‘as the firstborn,’ already implies the rulership ... Adam was ‘the Son of God,’ having dominion accorded to him, which he forfeited …. The ‘Sons of God’ to be truly such must be restored back to their forfeited dominion.” - George N. H. Peters
After the removal of the Church and
the establishment of a seven-year covenant with
1. The battle against
2. The battle of Armageddon.
These two battles will be fought in
The Amalekites were the first of the Gentile nations to war
The sentence pronounced upon the Amalekites in Ex. 17: 14 was not carried out in its completeness until the days of Hezekiah (1 Chron. 4: 39-43), and from that point in history the Amalekites ceased to exist. Although the Amalekites figured prominently in Old Testament history, dating all the way back to the days of Abraham (Gen. 14: 7), archaeologists today have failed to unearth a trace of this nation’s existence. The Amalekites have been “utterly put out of remembrance,” just as God promised.
There is a law of “first mention” in Scriptural interpretation which
states that the first time a subject is mentioned, the subject remains
unchanged throughout Scripture. Exodus,
chapter seventeen presents the first mention following the Exodus of Satan’s
Every nation which has lifted its hand against
During modern times the world has
witnessed anew one of the worst atrocities ever perpetrated upon the Jewish
people by a Gentile nation. The only
thing which will explain the actions of the Third Reich under Hitler during the
years 1933 - 1945 is what Scripture reveals concerning Satan’s attitude toward
and method of attack against God’s son,
2. The Coming
Russian Invasion of
This will be the day of
3. Armageddon (Isa. 63: 1-6; Joel 3: 2-16; Rev. 14: 14-20; 19: 17-21)
The Russian invasion of
The battle of Armageddon has to do with Satan’s final attempt to
Satan’s final effort, climaxing in Armageddon, is foreshadowed
in Psa. 83: 1-8 by a ten-kingdom confederation of nations moving against
Christ will return at the end of the Tribulation, Old
Testament saints will be raised from the dead, and the “whole house of
Just as Satan has used various Gentile nations throughout Man’s Day, vainly seeking to accomplish his God- dishonouring purpose, he will use all the Gentile nations of the world in his last great attempt to effect his own plans and purposes immediately preceding his dethronement. “The beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies,” will be “gathered together to make war against him [Christ] that sat on the horse, and against his army” (Rev. 19: 19). Although Christ will possess an accompanying army (composed of angels, cf. 1 Thess. 3: 13; 2 Thess. 1: 7; Jude 14; Deut. 33: 2), He will fight the battle alone. It was alone that He suffered, bled, and died; and it will be alone that He treads His enemies under His feet (Isa. 63: 1-6).
At the first coming of Christ, immediately before His
crucifixion, Roman soldiers led Him to the governor’s palace, stripped Him of
His arrayed Him in a scarlet robe, and placed a crown of thorns on His head and
a reed (symbolizing the sceptre of governmental power) in His right hand. This was done in order to openly ridicule the
One Who claimed to be “King of the Jews.” The Romans (the centre
of Gentile power in that day) had subjugated God’s son,
“This same Jesus” is the One Who will tread the
winepress alone. He appeared on earth the first time as the “Lamb of God,” but He will reappear as the “Lion of the
scenes which witnessed Christ’s suffering and humiliation will one day witness
His glory and exaltation. Satan’s final
attempt to prevent the transfer of supremacy - his own (exhibited through the “beast” in that day), his angels, and the
Gentile nations, transferred to Christ, the Church, and
Following the events of Armageddon, God’s Sons will then exercise their rightful positions of authority and power on and over the earth. God’s son, Israel, will be the supreme nation on earth, holding the sceptre previously held by the Gentile nations; God’s son, the Church [of the firstborn], will exercise supremacy over the nations from the heavens, holding the sceptre previously held by angels ruling under Satan; and God’s Son, Jesus, will exercise supremacy over all things, holding the sceptre (and far more) previously held by Satan.
Thus will the present age end and the new [millennial] age begin. “What a termination!” “What a climax!” “What a new beginning!”
The Salvation of Gentiles
By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not,
when she had received the spies with peace (Heb. 11:31).
There are two occurrences of the nation of
Moses, by commandment of the Lord, sent twelve spies into the
At the termination of the complete forty years, with a new
generation on the scene, the Lord spoke to Joshua saying, “Moses my
servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this
people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel
...” (Joshua 1: 2).
This new generation under Joshua was about to move forward at the point
where the former generation under Moses had failed. This time though, rather than twelve, only
two spies were sent into the land, to “view the land, even
Faith and Works
The two spies sent into
1. Rahab’s Faith
Rahab, a Gentile alienated from God (Eph. 2: 12), believed what God had revealed far more readily than the generation of Israelites who, with God dwelling in their midst, fell away at Kadesh-Barnea. Rahab’s response to the two spies constitutes one of the great confessions of faith recorded in the Word of God: “I know that the Lord hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you. For we have heard ...” (Joshua 2: 9, 10a). Rahab heard, and then believed. “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God” (Rom. 10: 17).
2. The Chronological Sequence of Events
Rahab was a Gentile saved out of the destruction of
Rahab “received the spies with peace.”
She believed the Word of God surrounding their journey. It is evident from Heb. 11: 31; James 2: 25 and the account in the Book of Joshua
that Rahab’s reception and treatment of the spies was the result of her faith. The king of
During the Great Tribulation 144,000 Jews will carry God’s
message to the Gentiles throughout the earth. These Jews will minister to the
earth-dwellers during a time when no man will be able to “buy or sell,” save he possesses “the mark, or
the name of the beast, or the number of his name” (Rev. 13: 17). These individuals
will be as the two Israelites in
The position which Gentiles will occupy relative to the
ministry of the 144,000 during the Great Tribulation is clearly brought out in
the account of the judgment of the nations (Gentiles) in Matt. 25: 31ff. This judgment occurs
following Christ’s return, following His dealings with
Following Armageddon, the Son of Man will sit upon “the throne of his glory,” and all the Gentiles coming out of the Great Tribulation will be gathered before Him. They will be separated, “as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats.” The sheep (saved Gentiles) will be placed on His right hand, and the goats (unsaved Gentiles) will be placed on His left hand. Saved Gentiles will be allowed to enter into “the kingdom,” but all unsaved Gentiles will be cast into “everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.”
The revealed, determining factor surrounding salvation in this judgment
will be centered on the Gentiles’ previous treatment of Christ’s “brethren” … during the Tribulation (vv. 35-40), as the revealed reason for Rahab’s
salvation centered on her previous treatment of the two Jewish spies in Jericho
6: 25). However,
as Rahab’s treatment of the two spies in
The Message Concerning the Kingdom
The message which will be carried to the ends of the earth by
the 144,000 Jewish witnesses during the Great Tribulation is called in Matt. 24: 14, the “gospel of the kingdom.”
The gospel of the kingdom was proclaimed to
All facets of the message concerning the coming kingdom must be understood in their proper framework if one is to have a due appreciation and understanding of what God has done, is doing, and is about to do. Thus, the remainder of this study will centre around the past, present, and future ministry of “the word of the kingdom” as it affects Jew, Christian, and Gentile.
1. The Kingdom Offered to
Almost 2,000 years ago John the Baptizer appeared to
The kingdom offered to
The present existing kingdom of the heavens is under the control of Satan and his angels, who reside in the heavens. These “principalities” and “powers” are designated as “world-rulers” (Gk.) and are associated with darkness, not light. These world-rulers, existing apart from light, govern a world which is itself in the grip of spiritual darkness - the Gentile nations, apart from God (Eph. 6: 12; cf. Eph. 2: 12; 5: 8).
[Fallen] Angels under Satan, holding various positions of power in this heavenly realm, govern the earth through men, holding various positions of power in the earthly realm. The breakdown of governmental powers among men on earth has its counterpart, wherein the real controlling power lies, in a parallel breakdown of governmental powers among angels in the heavens. Although “the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men,” establishing and removing rulers and nations (Dan. 4: 17, 25, 26, 32; cf. Ezek. 28: 14-19; 38, 39; Gen. 10: 32; Ex. 15: 1ff; 17: 14), the kingdom of this world is presently in the hands of sinful man under the dominion of the incumbent Messiah and his subordinates - Satan and his angels. The entire structure, under Satan, is a rule of darkness within a kingdom where darkness reigns supreme (Col. 1: 13). And the governmental structure of the earth will remain in this fashion until the completion of Man’s Day.
Satan’s present rule extends over all the Gentile nations, but
this rule does not include
2. The Kingdom Offered to Christians - Present
The Church, as
Just as surely as Caleb, Joshua, and the second generation of Israelites moved in and possessed the land of their inheritance, so will overcoming Christians one day move in and possess the land of their inheritance. The incumbent rulers, as in the type, are to be put down; and Christ with His Church (which will then be His bride) are to dwell in that land in their stead, exercising a rule from the heavens over the earth.
In that day the governmental structure within both the earthly and heavenly spheres of the kingdom will be in harmony with Matt. 6: 10: “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.” The will of Satan with his angels, exhibited in the heavens, is presently being manifested on the earth, contrary to the will of God. But in the coming Kingdom - with a change in administration - the will of Christ with His bride, exhibited in the heavens, will be manifested on earth. (Note the prominent place these words occupy in what could be termed the model prayer in Matt. 6: 9-13. We are to pray, “after this manner”; and the very first petition set forth immediately following “Hallowed be thy name” is “Thy kingdom come …” We are to pray concerning the coming kingdom; we are to pray concerning that time when a transfer of power will be effected, and righteousness - in heaven, and on earth - will be the order of the day.)
The gospel of the kingdom was proclaimed during the earthly
ministry of Christ when the offer of the kingdom of the heavens was extended to
a) The Gospel of the Grace of God
Key verses for this gospel are Rom. 1: 16 and Eph. 2: 8, 9. This is the good news that “Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures” (1 Cor. 15: 3, 4). This is a message for the unsaved alone.
Rom. 1: 16 reveals that this gospel is “the power of God unto
salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”
God requires shed blood to atone for sin. God’s Son paid the price on
Man can add nothing to that which God’s Son has already paid in full. This is the reason we read in Eph. 2: 8, 9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
Salvation is free for fallen man only because Someone paid the price - a price which God required, and a
price which fallen man could not pay.
salvation and my [eternal] salvation cost plenty. This salvation cost the death of God “as Son” on
A present tragedy in Christian circles is the light regard many hold for the salvation which we possess merely because it didn’t cost us anything. The tragedy for those in the world is the fact that God “as Son” has already paid the full price for their salvation, and this salvation is being spurned.
The Gospel of the Glory of Christ
Key verses for this gospel are 2 Cor. 4: 3, 4 and 1 Tim. 1: 11. This is the good news concerning the glory of Christ which will be revealed in the coming age. This is a message for the saved alone.
The words “glorious gospel” in 2 Cor. 4: 4; 1 Tim. 1: 11 (KJV) should be translated “gospel of the glory.” This gospel was committed to the Apostle Paul, and is, on several occasions, called “my gospel,” i.e., Paul’s gospel. Shortly after his conversion Paul was taken into the Arabian Desert, Christ personally appeared to him, and spent approximately three years instructing Paul in matters concerning this gospel (Gal. 1: 11-18).
The gospel of glory has to do with the “mystery” which was
revealed to Paul while he was with Christ in the
Only in the gospel of the glory of Christ does one find the heirship (v. 6), and the unsearchable riches of Christ (v. 8). The salvation which we presently possess is not an inherited salvation. According to Scripture our inheritance can be forfeited, but not our eternal salvation. Nor does the gospel of grace involve the unsearchable riches of Christ, but, rather, the shame, suffering, and humiliation of Calvary.
God has visited the “Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name” (Acts 15: 14), and the mystery concerns the fact that God has accorded to these Gentiles (now Christians) the same privilege He has accorded to believing Jews (now Christians). They have both become a part of the body of Christ. God has broken down the “middle wall of partition,” creating “one new man” in Christ (Eph. 2: 14, 15). And the offer has been extended to individuals comprising this one new man - apart from any distinction between believing Jews and believing Gentiles - to participate in the Son’s inheritance as joint-heirs with the Son in the coming kingdom when His glory is revealed for the entire universe to behold.
3. The Kingdom Offered to Gentiles - Future
This is graphically set forth in a type-antitype treatment of
the Book of Jonah. Jonah was called and
commissioned to carry God’s message of salvation to the Gentile city of
The nation of
The message of the 144,000 will be the “gospel of the kingdom” (Matt. 24: 14), for the kingdom of the heavens can then once again be announced as being “at hand.” Results of the ministry of the 144, 000 are described as “a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues ...” (Rev. 7: 9). These individuals, however, are only the ones martyred for their faith during the Great Tribulation (vv. 13‑15; cf. Rev. 13: 15; 20: 4). There will also be an innumerable multitude of saved Gentiles who escape martyrdom and come out of the Great Tribulation alive. These Gentiles will comprise the “sheep” appearing at the judgment of the nations in Matt. 25: 31ff.
Gentiles who are saved under the ministry of the 144,000 and suffer martyrdom will be accorded the privilege of ruling and reigning with Christ “a thousand years” (Rev. 20: 4, 6; cf. James 1: 12; Rev. 2: 10). These individuals will have “all tears” wiped from their eyes, something not said of everyone until after the Millennium (cf. Rev. 7: 17; 21: 4).
The promise of rulership with Christ held by the Tribulation
martyrs (which must, of necessity, be “from the heavens”) does not appear to be equally held by saved Gentiles
appearing at the judgment of the nations.
Of these it is said, “Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom
prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 5: 34). Nothing is said about
ruling with Christ, as is said of the Tribulation martyrs. These individuals will, then, form the “sheep” nations which will enter into the
earthly sphere of the kingdom with
Israel, converted and restored, will be placed at the head of the nations; saved Gentiles surviving and coming out of the Great Tribulation will form the nations over which Israel will exercise supremacy; and Christ with His bride will rule from the heavens, a rule which will also include Tribulation martyrs.
A Good Report
And what shall I more say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthah; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets: Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to fight the armies of the aliens. Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection: And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment: They were stoned. they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goat-skins; being destitute. afflicted, tormented; (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth. And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect (Heb. 11: 32-40).
The great issue in the Book of Hebrews is “Faith.” God has spoken, and man is called upon to believe what God has revealed. The opening words in the first chapter of this book form the foundation upon which the remainder of the book rests: “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son [lit. ‘in Son’] ...” (Heb. 1: 1, 2a). Old Testament saints were called upon to believe the Word of God in time past, and New Testament saints are called upon to believe the Word of God in these last days.
God’s revelation in the Book of Hebrews pertains particularly
to issues surrounding a type-antitype treatment of the
There are two great epistles on “faith” in the New Testament - Romans
and Hebrews. Romans
deals primarily with the salvation which we presently possess, the
salvation of the spirit; and Hebrews deals primarily with the salvation to be
revealed, the salvation of
the soul. “Faith” in Romans looks back to the issues of
1. A BETTER RESURRECTION
Hebrews, chapter eleven forms a climactic point toward which revelation in the first ten chapters move. The response, “by faith,” on the part of individuals throughout this chapter was occasioned by the promises of God. God had, through His revelation “unto the fathers by the prophets,” revealed certain things concerning His plans and purposes. And within the scope of God’s revelation concerning His plans and purposes lay the promises of future blessings which would one day be realized by His people. Numerous Old Testament saints became interested in these things, took their eyes off the present, and looked out into the future, believing that God would ultimately bring to pass what He had promised.
Outlining Abraham’s walk by faith in Heb. 11: 8-16, two things stand out above everything else - the promise of an earthly inheritance, and the promise of a better inheritance, “that is, an heavenly.” It is clear from verses 10-16 that not only did Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob desire the heavenly inheritance above the earthly, but so did many other Old Testament saints (v. 9). And it is also clear from passages such as Matt. 8: :11 and Luke 13: 28 that these Old Testament saints who moved through their pilgrim life by faith, looking beyond the earthly inheritance to the heavenly, will one day realize this heavenly inheritance.
Our text in Heb. 11: 32-40 centers around the thought of “a better resurrection” (v. 35), a resurrection having to do strictly. With [overcomers and] Old Testament saints. Certain Old Testament saints, by faith, passed through trials and testings, refusing to accept deliverance, even to the point of death, in order to obtain something which God had promised – “a better resurrection.” …
Hebrews, chapter eleven is divided into two parts (vv. 4-16; vv. 17-40), and each part begins at the same point and also ends at the same point - the blood sacrifice, and the Kingdom Age. At the beginning of part one Abel offered a lamb (v. 4), and at the beginning of part two Abraham offered his son (vv. 17-19). Part one terminates with Abraham and the heirs with him passing through their pilgrim life on earth, by faith, “desiring a better country, that is, an heavenly” (v. 16); and part two terminates with Old Testament saints (heirs with Abraham) passing through the same pilgrim life on earth, by faith, that they might obtain “a better resurrection” (v. 35). The “heavenly inheritance” into which Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and certain other Old Testament saints will enter is millennial in its scope of fulfilment; and, within the parallel between the two parts of Hebrews, chapter eleven, the “better resurrection” must also be millennial in its scope of fulfilment. The “better resurrection” must also be inseparably linked with the heavenly inheritance.
It is clear from verse
forty that the Old Testament saints who, in that coming day, have a part in the “better resurrection” will not be “made perfect [brought to the goal of their calling]” apart from New Testament saints. The goal of their calling during
Old Testament days was “a better country, that is, an
heavenly”; and this calling must be realized at a future time in the heavens
with New Testament saints.
According to Matt. 8: 11, individuals outside the nation of
“The fact that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob will be found in the Kingdom of the Heavens seems to reveal a mystery of which very little is said, although it is plainly corroborated by other Scriptures. This is, that saved Israelites, like believers of our own Age, will ultimately be found to consist of two classes, the one, and much the smaller, of which will dwell in the Heavenly City of God; while the great bulk of the nation will, as Ezekiel tells us [Ezek. 37: 12-14], be raised from their graves when the Lord returns, and be led back to the land of Israel” (G. H. Pember).
2. THE OUT-RESURRECTION
All through Hebrews, chapter eleven there are parallels between the experiences of Old Testament saints and those of New Testament saints. The “better resurrection” associated with the Israelites’ pilgrim walk by faith is no exception, for this resurrection has its counterpart in the “out-resurrection” associated with the Christians’ pilgrim walk by .faith. And a study of one resurrection will shed light upon the other resurrection.
In Phil. 3: 10-14, Paul’s driving ambition, governing his entire pilgrim walk, was to “attain unto the resurrection [lit. ‘out-resurrection’] of the dead” (v. 11). The “out-resurrection” in this verse appears in connection with “the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (v. 14). A prize necessitates a conflict, which has to do with the present conflict between Christians and the world-rulers of the darkness of this age (Eph. 6: 12ff); and the reception of this prize requires victory in the conflict. …
The regular Greek word for “resurrection” appearing throughout the New Testament is anastasis. This is a compound word comprised of ana, which means “up,” and stasis, which means “to rise,” or “to stand.” Thus, anastasis means “to rise up” or “to stand up.” When used relative to those who have died, the exact meaning of the word would be, “a resumption of life allowing one to rise up or stand up from the state [and place] of death.”
The Greek word appearing in Phil. 3: 11, erroneously translated “resurrection” in most English versions of Scripture, is ekanastasis. This word is made up of three parts (ek - ana - stasis). The latter two parts of the word (ana-stasis), as we have seen, means “to rise up,” or “to stand up.” But the preposition ek prefixed to anastasis adds a new dimension. Ek means “out of,” making ek-ana-stasis mean “to stand up out of”… [the state and place of the dead].*
[* The out-resurrection (ekanastasis) of Christians, will be a separation of “the dead in Christ,” from ‘Hades’ / ‘Sheol’ the place of “the dead” in the underworld. At the time of the out-resurrection, certain Christians, will be separated from other Christians. It is not a standing up out from amongst those who will be resurrected at the time of Christ’s return.]
Understanding ekanastasis in the light of its context in Phil. 3:11 will clearly reveal that a resurrection per se (rising from the dead) is not what is in view at all. The subject at hand is “overcoming,” “winning a prize in a conflict,” and these things are associated with the issues of the the judgment seat of Christ ant the coming kingdom. Ekanastasis has to do with certain Christians (the overcomers) being elevated to a status above - “standing up out of” [the place of the dead in the Underworld, (Luke 16: 19-31; Acts 2: 27, 31; Matt. 16: 18b. cf. Matt 12: 40; Rev. 6: 9-11, etc.] - the status occupied by the remaining Christians (the non-overcomers). At the judgment seat of Christ certain Christians will be shown to have overcome the world, the flesh, and the Devil - the three great enemies of Christians - and the remaining Christians will be shown to have been overcome. Overcoming Christians will then be elevated to a standing above Christians who were overcome and will be set apart for the distinct purpose of occupying positions with Christ in the kingdom. They will realize the “prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” …
Paul’s magnificent obsession in Phil. 3: 10-14 centered around an intimate relationship with Christ during his present pilgrim walk (v. 10) of such a nature that would allow him to ultimately be among those who would “attain unto the out-resurrection” (v. 11), receiving the “prize” (v. 14).
3. POSITIONS IN THE KINGDOM
Old Testament times Abraham and his descendants through Isaac and Jacob were in
possession of both an earthly calling and a heavenly calling. Many Old Testament saints looked beyond their
earthly calling to a higher calling, the heavenly calling. The removal of the kingdom of the heavens,
from the nation of
Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were strangers and pilgrims in a land which they were to receive for an everlasting possession (Gen. 13: 14-16; 15: 13; 17: 7, 8; 26: 3, 4; 28: 13, 14); and in order for the promises of God to be fulfilled concerning this land, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob must be raised from the dead and placed back in this land, no longer strangers and pilgrims (cf. Gen. 37:1). Then, for Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob to realize their heavenly inheritance as well, they must also dwell in heavenly places but still retain their status relative to the earthly inheritance. …
The positions which Old Testament saints will occupy in the
kingdom of the heavens must, of necessity, be over the
Rights of the Firstborn
a) The firstborn was to be ruler of the household under and for the Father.
b) The firstborn was to act as priest of the family.
c) The firstborn was to receive a double portion of the Father’s estate.
Israel was placed in the position of God’s firstborn son to “serve”
the Lord their God as “a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation” in the land of their inheritance - the
land covenanted to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Ex. 4: 22, 23; 19: 5, 6). In addition, at this time,
The Church was subsequently called into existence to be the
recipient of this forfeited inheritance, and the Church [of the firstborn] will
inherit the double portion of the Father’s estate, following the adoption into sonship.
Although the blessings in store for
Christians are heavenly, these
heavenly blessings will include an earthly “inheritance” and “possession.” Christians are to be joint-heirs with Christ; and
the Father has promised His Son, “Ask of me, and I will give thee the
for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth
for thy possession” (Psa. 2: 8; cf. Rev. 2:
26, 27). This earthly inheritance and possession - completely
The Old Testament saints who qualified to rule from the
heavens will realize the double portion of the Father’s estate at the same time
Christians. As the
saints of the present dispensation who rule from the heavens will possess an
earthly inheritance (having to do with the Gentile nations), the saints of the
past dispensation who rule from the heavens will also possess an earthly
inheritance (having to do with the nation of
Order of Rulers in the Kingdom
Within the coming
The vice-regents who will rule under Christ in the kingdom of
the heavens over the nation of
b) The Twelve Apostles.
c) Old Testament Saints.
The vice-regents who will rule under Christ in the kingdom of the heavens over the Gentile nations also appear in Scripture in an orderly three-fold classification:
a) The 144, 000 Jewish Witnesses of the Tribulation.
b) Christians. [i.e., the overcomers, (Rev. 2: 26.)]
c) Tribulation Martyrs.
1. Rulers Over
(2 Sam. 7: 8-16). Old Testament prophecies concerning David’s coming rule over Israel also place David among his people in the earthly sphere of the kingdom (e.g., Ezek. 34: 24). But David was a “prophet” as well as a “king” (Acts 2: 29, 30), and according to Luke 13: 28, 29 “all the prophets,” along with “Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob,” will have a part in the heavenly sphere of the kingdom (cf. Matt. 8: 11, 12). Consequently, Scripture clearly places David in both spheres of activity in the coming [millennial] kingdom - earthly and heavenly.
Such a rule will not be peculiar to David, for Christ, Who
will be over David, will rule in both earthly and heavenly spheres
of the kingdom. He will exercise a rule
from David’s throne in the earthly Jerusalem and also exercise a rule from His
Own throne in the heavenly Jerusalem (Luke 1: 32, 33; Rev. 3: 21). It is thus evident that David, as the first
vice-regent directly under Christ over
b) The Twelve Apostles: Next in the order of rulers over
c) Old Testament Saints:
Next in the order of rulers over
2. Rulers Over the Gentile Nations
a) The 144,000 Jewish Witnesses of the Tribulation:
As the twelve who proclaimed the gospel of the kingdom to Israel for
approximately three and one-half years at the first coming of Christ will
occupy positions directly under Christ and His first vice-regent, David, the 144,000 who proclaim the
gospel of the kingdom to the Gentiles for ‑ a comparable length of time
immediately preceding - the second coming of Christ will occupy positions
directly under Christ over the Gentile nations. The specific promise is given in Rev. 12: 5: “And she [
b) Christians - [i.e., the overcomers from amongst them]: Christians constitute the “peculiar people” to whom the offer to rule in the heavenly places over the nations with Christ in His kingdom is presently being extended. The specific promise concerning this rule is given in Rev. 2: 26, 27; 3: 21: “And he that overcometh, and keepth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron ... To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne …”
Christians who qualify to occupy positions in the kingdom will
rule in various positions of power and authority - some over ten cities, some
over five, and some over one (Luke 19: 11ff).
Christians will apparently occupy positions of rulership directly under
the 144.000 Jewish saints and the twelve who rule over
c) Tribulation Martyrs: The specific promise concerning Tribulation martyrs and their place in the kingdom is given in Rev. 20: 4: “And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the Word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark in their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.”
This is the only information provided in Scripture concerning the place of the Tribulation martyrs in the kingdom. Their rule with Christ must, of necessity, be from the heavens, for that will be the abode of those who rule with Christ. …
Thus will the future
“I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown:” (Revelation 3: 11, N.I.V.).