FRIDAY MORNING MANNA  

Biblical Numerology: NUMBER FIVE Part VI

 Additional Lessons from the Feeding of the Five Thousand

(Messages for Holy Week Celebrants)

 

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

Shallow men believe in luck, believe in circumstances.

Strong men believe in cause and effect.

RALPH WALDO EMERSON, Conduct of Life

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Most, if not all Catholics as well as other mainstream Christians will abstain from eating meat, but not fish, today, Good Friday of the Lenten Season.  If you still eat fish at this time of earth’s polluted history, check on the internet “Top 12 Contaminated Fish You Shouldn’t Be Eating.”www.manukafeed.com./contaminated-fish/?utm_source=yahoo8utm-campaign=yahoo-fish-us&utm-medium=cpc&utm_content=fishl. (Note: there are cookies on this site)

The Bible clearly distinguishes unclean and clean animals for eating purposes, including fish; the clean have fins and scales. All other sea and fresh water creatures are unclean, that is, according to the Creator’s love and wisdom, not man’s reasoning. See Leviticus 11: 1-47, etc. This divine classification was not only given to and for the Israelites but in the time of Noah!  See Gen. 6: 6: 17-22; 7: 1-24.

Way back in 1905, E. G. White presciently wrote the following warnings regarding clean fish, even at that early time, evidently much more so today, over a hundred years after!

      “In many places fish become so contaminated on the filth on which they feed as to be a cause of disease. This is especially the case where the fish come in contact with the sewage of the large cities. The fish that are fed on the contents of the drain may pass into distant waters, and may be caught where the water is pure and fresh. Thus when used as food they bring disease and death on those who do not suspect the danger.”- Counsels on Diets and Food, p.394. No. 698 (1905).

Yes, Jesus, God in the flesh, not only miraculously fed clean fish to  the thousands who had flocked to listen to Him preach the gospel on two separate occasions, among two largely different groups of people, but He also ate with them. He prepared and partook of fish with His disciples before and after His death and resurrection isHisin 31 A.D. “What a difference a day makes” and that was almost two thousand years ago. Since then, sin-cursed earth, its waters, and the whole atmosphere have become exceedingly polluted. Above all, God’s word and specifications  haven’t changed.

Ascending to heaven in the glorified flesh of His adopted human nature, having conquered Satan, temptation in all its forms, death, and the grave, He first presented Himself to the Father to confirm whether His death and blood spilt at Calvary fulfilled the requirement as the perfectatoning sacrifice and ransom price demanded by their plan of redemption for the fallen human race. Of course it was! Hallelujah! Praise God forevermore! “Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift.” 2 Cor. 9: 15. Indeed, lest anyone forget and be deceived by the grand counterfeit, Christ was “offered once and for all. Note the following clear verses (emphasis mine):

 Heb. 9: 25-28:  v 25  “Nor yet that He should offer Himself often, as the [typical] high priest entereth into the holy place  every year with blood of others [blood of animlas];  v 25 For then must He often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world [aion, dispensation] hath He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. v 27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, after this the judgment: v 28 So Christ once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time [second coming] without sin unto salvation [ no longer the Lamb of God].

Heb. 10: 9-14: v 9  Then said He, Lo, I come to do Thy will, O God. He taketh away the first[typical sacrifices, etc under the Old Covenant ratified by the blood of animals], that He may establish the second [antitypical offering of Himself as Lamb of God and His own blood in the New Covenant]. v 10  By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.  v 12 But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right hand of God [position of ultimate authority, power, and honor]. v 14 For by one offering He hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.”

Christ’s sacrifice at Calvary was the antitype and substance of the shadowy sacrificial system of the Old Testament times that all pointed forward to and typified during the Mosaic dispensation. From Adam to the last believer until Christ came, all were saved by faith in Christ— not by the typical offerings themselves! At the cross, shadow met substance.  His work and mission on earthto fulfill the prophecies of the promised “seed of the woman” (Gen. 3: 15), the Messiah, the Prophet-Teacher, and to die as “the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world,” were finished.

“It is Finished.” What was finished?

      At His ascension, “He enters into the presence of His Father. He points to His wounded head, the pierced side, the marred feet; He lifts His hands, bearing the print of nails. He points to the token of His triumph; He presents to God the wave sheaf, those raised [resurrected] with Him [see Matt. 7: 50-53] as representatives of that great multitude [see Rev.7: 9-17] who shall com forth from the grave at His second coming. He approaches the Father, with whom there is joy over one sinner that repents  who rejoices over one with singing.

      “Before the foundations of the earth were laid, the Father and the Son had united in a covenantto redeem man if he should be overcome by Satan. They had clasped their hands in a solemn pledge [oath] that Christ [the Creator of heaven and earth] should become the surety for the human race. This pledge Christ has fulfilled. When upon the cross He cried out, ‘It is finished,’ He addressed the Father. The compact had been fully carried out.  Now He declares, Father it is finished. I have done Thy will, O My God. I have completed the work of redemption. If Thy justice is satisfied, ‘I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am.’ John 19: 30; 17: 24, K.J.V.

     “The voice of God is heard proclaiming that justice is satisfied. Satan is vanquished. Christ’stoiling, struggling ones on earth are ‘accepted in the Beloved.’ Eph. 1: 6. Before the heavenly angels and the representatives of the unfallen worlds, they are declared justified. Where He is there His [true and faithful, commandment-keeping] Church shall be.  ‘Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.’ Ps. 85: 10. The Father’s arms encircle His Son, and the word is given, ‘Let all the angels worship Him.’ Heb. 1: 6.

     “With joy unutterable, rulers and principalities and powers [in heaven and in the unfallen worlds—not yet on fallen, proud, rebellious earth!] acknowledge the supremacy of the Prince of life. The angel host prostrate themselves before Him, while the glad shout fills all the courts of heaven, ‘Worthy is the lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, andhonor, and glory, and blessing.’ Rev. 5: 12.  [Note: seven-fold!]

     “Songs of triumph mingle with music from angel harps, till heaven seems to overflow with joy and praise. Love has conquered. The lost [planet, and penitent, humble sinners] is found. Heaven rings with voices in lofty strains proclaiming, ‘Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power [four-fold] be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever.’ Rev. 5: 13.

     “From that scene of heavenly joy, there comes back to us on earth the echo of Christ’s own words, I ascend unto My Father, and your Father; and to My God, and your God.’ John 20: 17. The family of heaven and the family on earth are one. [see Eph. 3: 14-21] For us our Lord ascended, and for us He lives. ‘Wherefore He is able to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him[not through made “saints”], seeing He ever liveth [Jesus is no longer subject to death; He conquered it!] to make intercession for them.’ Heb. 7: 25.”- Ellen G. White, Desire of Ages, pp. 834, 835.

    “Over the rent sepulcher of Joseph [of Arimathea] Christ had proclaimed in triumph, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.’ These words could only spoken by the Deity. All created brings live by the will and power of God. They are dependent recipients of the life of God.  From the highest seraph to the humblest animate being, all are replenished from the source of life. Only He who is one with God could say, I have power to lay down My life, and I have power to take it again. In His divinity,  Christ possessed the power to break the bonds of death.

     “Christ arose from the dead as the first fruits of those that slept. He was the antitype of the wave sheaf, and His resurrection took place on the very day when the wave sheaf usually of barley] was to be presented before the Lord. For more than a thousand years this symbolic ceremony had been performed. From the harvest fields the first heads of ripened grain were gathered, and when the people went up to Jerusalem to the Passover, the sheaf of first fruit was waved as a thank offering before the Lord. Not until this was presented could the sickle be put to the grain, and it be gathered into sheaves. The sheaf dedicated to God represented the harvest. So Christ the first fruits represented the great spiritual harvest to be gathered for the kingdom of God. His resurrection is the type and pledge of the resurrection of all the righteous dead. [1 Thess. 4: 14 quoted].

     “As Christ arose He brought from the grave a multitude of captives. The earthquake at His death had rent open their graves, and when He arose, they came forth with Him. They were those who had been co-laborers with God, and who at the cost of their lives had borne testimony to the truth. Now they were to be witnesses for Him who had raised them from the dead.

    “During His ministry, Jesus had raised the dead to life. He had raised the son of the widow of Nain, and the ruler’s daughter, and Lazarus. But these were not clothed with immortality. After they were raised, they were still subject to death. But those who came forth from the grave at Christ’s resurrection were raised to everlasting life. They ascended with Him as trophies of His victory over death and the grave. These, said Christ, are no longer captives of Satan; I have redeemed them. I have brought them from the grave as the first fruits of My power, to be with Me where I am, nevermore to see death or experience sorrow.

     “These [resurrected saints—not “ghosts,””souls,” or “spirits”] went into the city [Jerusalem], and appeared unto many, declaring, Christ has risen from the dead, and we be risen with Him. Thus was immortalized the truth of the resurrection. The risen saints bore witness to the truth of the words, ‘Thy dead men shall live, together with My dead body they shall rise.’ Their resurrection was an illustration of the fulfillment of the prophecy, ‘Awake and sing, ye that dwell in the dust: for they dew is the dew of herbs, and earth shall cast out the dead.’ Isa. 26: 19.” –Ibid, Desire of Ages, pp. 785, 786.

 

Mankind’s Only Merciful High Priest, Mediator, and Advocate –  In preparation to entering Hisclosing work of atonement as the sinners’ merciful High Priest, Mediator and Advocate in the heavenly sanctuary, of which the earthly tabernacle (sanctuary or temple) “made with man’s hands” was “merely a figure of,” Christ returned to earth to prepare His disciples for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Godhead, to be His vicegerent on earth.  Apostle Paul testified: “For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how thatChrist 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: and that He was seen of Cephas [Peter], and then of the twelve: after that, He was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present [when he wrote this epistle] but some are fallen asleep [already dead]. After that, He was seen of James; after this, all the apostles [120?]. And last of all He was seen ofme also, as of one born out of due time.” 1 Cor. 15: 3-8, K.J.V. Luke wrote: “To whom also He showed Himself alive after His passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.”  Acts 1: 3.

Ask God to make you also fishers of men in these last days. He is waiting, He is calling all!

                                                                                                                       (To be continued next week)