FRIDAY MORNING MANNA   

Biblical Numerology: NUMBER SIX Part IV

 The Six Men from Upper Gate of the North- I

 

     The book of Ezekiel is deeply instructive. E G. White, Fundamentals of Christian Education, p. 395. “Read the ninth chapter of Ezekiel.” Ibid, Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 267.

 

 One of the principal tenets of studying the Bible and its prophecies is: “Prophets are subject to prophets” (1 Cor. 14: 32), for the Bible never contradicts itself being really of one Author speaking through various penmen through different periods of time as present truth for each period till the close of time.

The times of Volume 9 of the Testimonies covers a 5-year span extending to the late summer of 1909. In Testimonies, Vol. 9, pp. 19, 20, E. G. White wrote: (emphasis mine):

      “In a special sense Seventh-day Adventists have been set in the world as watchmen and light bearers. On them has been entrusted the last warning for a perishing world. On them is shining wonderful light from the word of God. They have been given a work of the most solemn import — the proclamation of the first, second, and third angels’ messages [of Rev. 14: 6-12]. There is no other work of so great importance. They are to allow nothing else to absorb their attention.

     “The most solemn truths ever entrusted to mortals have been given us to proclaim to the world. The proclamation of these truths is to be our work. The world is to be warned, and God’s people are to be true to the trust committed to them. They are not to engage in speculation, neither are they to enter into business enterprises with unbelievers; for this would hinder them in their God-given work.

    “So far as his opportunities extend, everyone who has received the light of truth is under the same responsibility as was that prophet of Israel to whom came the word:

       ‘Son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at My mouth, and warn them from Me. When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity [not “die in the Lord!”]; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he does not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.”  Eze. 33-7-9, K.J.V.

     “Are we to wait until the fulfillment of the prophecies of the end before we say anything concerning them? [The answer should be a resounding NO for all who have a burden for souls. This is why I am personally trying to do my 2 cents worth on this weekly column. Let us earnestly pray for one another that we may do our part as bidden!] Of what value will our words be then? Shall we wait until God’s judgments fall upon the transgressor before we tell him how to avoid them?  Where is our faith in the word of God? Must we see things foretold come to pass before we will believe what He has said? In clear, distinct rays light has come to us, showing us that the great day of the Lord is near at hand, ‘even at the doors.’ Let us read and understand before it is too late.”

The Lord’s Day

 As to what “the great day of the Lord” or the real “Lord’s day” according to the bible refers to, read the three chapters of the book of Zephaniah. Let me quote verses 14 -18 to give you a quick heads up to cut into your busy secular “mad-house” daily schedules exacerbated by the now non-stop “late-breaking news” of the current unprecedented moment of U.S. political history, thus far, — which is yet playing out to a cornucopia of disbelief, dismay, disappointment confusion, anger, anxiety, and even greater polarization of the nation known globally since its birth as the United States. Some

political pundits and scholars sadly describe the situation as currently the “Disunited

Let’s hope, pray, work like never before, individually and collectively, and proclaim by pen, voice, and life witness the third angels’ message so that the still greatest nation on the earth, its leaders and people will experience the peace that comes from within not from without by the indwelling of Christ through the Holy Spirit. This is internal, not external or environmental “peace” or “pax” (as in the short-lived, unrealistic Pax Romana or Pax Americana, etc. ) — obtained through the age-old tool called compromise, the high art of diplomacy, temporary truces, ancient literal sharpened saber-wrattling which has kept up with the times and morphed into now nuclear warhead missile test-firing posturing, modernized cloak-and dagger operations, once imaginative sci-fi story plots but now real hacking warfare, alliances that hardly pass the “smell test,” and Judas-like betrayals.

How do we know this without being guilty of speculation, gossip, and evil-speaking? As someone put it: If we don’t learn from history we are condemned to repeat it. Thus aside from well document biblical and secular history of nations and kingdoms, the expose of the century of the digital age by household names, considered either heroes or villains—Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, and the now-just–freed Chelsea Manning— of secret metadata gathering for national security purposes, of allies spying on one another not only of their nation’s secret military and technical capabilities, movements, and plans but even personal information.

Personal privacy long cherished and protected as a moral and legal right officially expired in this generation never more to be resurrected or reinstated to its pristine origins and past. It’s all part of the prophesied progressive deterioration of the “two lamb-like horns” or powers of the gentle beast of Revelation 13 transforming it finally into one “speaking like a dragon!” No nation today implicitly trusts another any more.  And rightfully so as God long revealed and warned but few took seriously even as His ancient chosen people, Israel and Judah, repeatedly did, even persecuting and killing the very prophets He sent to deliver and save these stiff-necked, rebellious, idolatrous, and unthankful chosen people.

Hear the weeping prophet’s words that are more relevant today for all who have staked their souls and futures on the promises of mortals and lofty yet flawed political party platforms or deadly military might:

     “Thus says the Lord: Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart departs from the Lord. For he shall be like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see when good comes, but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land which is not inhabited. [But] blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, and whose hope is the Lord. For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, which spreads out its roots by the river, and will not fear when heat comes; but her leaf will be green., and will not be anxious in the year of draught, nor will cease from yielding fruit.

 Now, to the great day of the Lord, or the Lord’s day:

     “The great day of the Lord is near; it is near and hastens quickly. The noise of the day of the Lord is bitter; there the mighty men shall cry out. That days is a day of wrath, the day of trouble and distress, a day of devastation and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, a day of trumpet and alarm against the fortified cities and against the high towers. I will bring distress upon men, and they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against the Lord; their blood shall be poured out like dust, and their flesh like refuse.

Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the Lord’s wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of His jealousy, for He will make speedy riddance of all those who dwell in the land.” Then follows the call to repentance and judgment on nations. Read it for yourselves, dear friends, and share it as part of the third angels’ message.

Watchman and light bearers: In the Sermon on the Mount the Messiah unfolded the nature of His mission, as prophesied in the Old, instructing His first disciples then, and all who thereafter willingly and intelligently accept His person, life-example, teachings, sacrifice, and gospel commission–the realChristian—that they would be His ambassadors, servants as co-laborers in the work of ingathering souls lost in sin and deceived by Satan for His spiritual kingdom of righteousness on earth, and literal kingdom of glory when He returns the second time in all His glory.

He said: “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men,that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5: 14, N.K.J.V.

Ever heard that “salvation is individual—that we are not saved in groups”? and that “not-once-saved-always-saved”? This one passage from the book of Ezekiel, among many throughout the Bible, underscores these unpalatable truths that false shepherds have been distorting and counterfeiting.  But we all have heard the phrase: “There is a day of reckoning. “ All need to be reminded, whatever their religious affiliation or station in life is, whether super powers-that-be in the high places of the earth or the unknown faces and wretched fates of exploited classes of humanity (thank God, both temporary!) that: “The work of character] preparation is an individual work . . .The purity and devotion of one will not offset the want of these qualities in another. Though all nations [America, Russia, Israel, the currently fracturing EU, Syria, Iran, Turkey, North Korea, the Middle-East powers, Italy, Rome, the Vatican City, Philippines etc.] are to pass in judgment before God, yet He will examine the case of each individual with as close and searching scrutiny as if there were not another being upon the earth. Everyone must be tested, and found without spot or wrinkle or any such thing. Eph. 5: 27.” – E. G. White, Great Controversy, p. 490.

In the awful day of God as the prophet Zephaniah wrote, there will be no more “highly classified state secrets.” All will be revealed to the whole universe, settling once and for all eternity that God is loving, merciful, kind, long-suffering, yet righteous and just. “beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, Vengeance is Mine; I will repay says the Lord. . . .Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Rom. 12: 19. I hope the leaders of nations and world religions would enshrine these principles in their hearts as they make decisions!

We will deal with the startling ninth chapter of Ezekiel in greater detail in the following Fridays for lack of space in this issue. For starters and heads up for all interested in this endeavor, please prayerfully read the chapter yourself when you get home tonight. For once, shut out any news on the day that is dominating the media.  Plead for the guidance and enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, and we are assured it will be given. See Luke 11: 1-13.

Though few have read, much less have studied the book and prophecies of Ezekiel in the past, the time has fully come when none need remain any longer in the dark by negligence or by yielding to Satan’s crafty temptations and delusions in these last days to distract us by his unnumbered schemes, particularly the daily avalanche of real and “fake news.” Unless everything is tested by the divine diagnostic tool of the sacred Scriptures, and by prayer that is depended upon as the breath of the soul, it will become increasingly more confusing and difficult to distinguish one from the other, and who is really telling the “truth” during this truly unprecedented moment of U.S. political and legal history!

Yes, it’s more than just “mildly nauseating”— if you’ve heard or read who said these words recently with its yet unfolding ramifications upon the final outcome, when and how we know not now. This brings to mind what John was shown in vision by the True Witness, describing the last spiritualcondition of the generic Laodicean or “lukewarm” church and people before the church triumphantfinally emerges.

     “And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning [the Beginner, that is] of the creation of God: ‘I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. ‘So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of My mouth. Because you say, I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked.” Rev. 3: 14-22, N.K.J.V.  Now we know how God sees us!

                                                     (To be continued next week)