God’s Eternal Plan

Beyond this earth, beyond this world, into the ages of eternity

Fred R. Coulter—October 24, 2016

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Greetings, brethren! Welcome to the Last Great Day! The great day of the Feast! And a great day it is going to be! It is so important that God has not revealed it except to those who have His Spirit because:

they have repented

they have been baptized

they have love Him

they keep His commandment

they have a relationship with Him through fellowship with the Spirit

they properly put the Word of God together; rightly dividing the Word of God

Like everything else, God has hidden it within the pages of His Holy Word. Some things are easy to understand, and some things are difficult to understand. But this Last Great Day answers the question: How on earth is God going to solve all the problems of human death.

As you know, all of the Holy Days are listed in Lev. 23, and they’re listed there for a very specific purpose. We find them in various parts of the Bible, plus the meaning of them in the Bible.

Let’s just review a little bit here concerning the Feast of Tabernacles and then the Last Great Day. The Last Great Day is one of the most important in the plan of God, but the least mentioned, and the hardest to find the answers to.

Leviticus 23:34: “Speak to the children of Israel, saying, ‘The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the Feast of Tabernacles for seven days to the LORD.’” We just finished that at sunset last night.

Verse 35: “On the first day shall be a Holy convocation. You shall do no servile work therein. Seven days you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD.”

Verse 37 is a summary of everything leading up to these Feasts: “These are the Feasts of the LORD…”—all of them!

Verse 36: “On the eighth day shall be a Holy convocation to you. And you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD….” That’s today, the eighth day, and eight is the number of perfection and God’s plan cannot be perfected without this day.

“…It is a solemn assembly. And you shall do no servile work therein. “These are the Feasts of the LORD, which you shall proclaim to be Holy convocations to offer an offering made by fire to the LORD, a burnt offering and a grain offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, everything on its day” (vs 36-37).

Then Num. 28 & 29 show beginning with the morning and evening sacrifice, the Sabbath sacrifice, the monthly sacrifice and then it goes right on in to all the Holy Days of God with their sacrifices.

Verse 38: “Besides the Sabbaths of the LORD, and besides your gifts, and besides all your vows, and besides all your freewill offerings which you give to the LORD.”

As you know, because everyone participates in tithes and offerings—and you should be—because that’s your response back to God. God has made it so that we can give freely. Jesus said to freely give because you have freely received. This is why God does not like the brethren to be merchandized and to have fear put upon them. God does say to tithe and to give offerings.

Today, since we don’t have the animal sacrifices, these offerings are monetary sacrifices. We should have these monetary sacrifices giving to the Church, and we use that to preach the Gospel and feed the flock.

As you know we don’t charge for any of the material that we have. The only request we have with The Holy Bible in Its Original Order—because of the expense of it—is that an offering be made. That is all! That has to be done all free will. We choose!

This way we can offer the books free, the information free, and then people can receive it, God can work with them, send His Spirit to be with them, and they can understand and come to repentance. They have something to work with for God to bring them to understanding and repentance and baptism.

All of these offerings are used to serve the brethren, serve the people, take care of the expenses that we have. We report to you, as you know, every year at the end of the year when we send an annual receipt.

we thank you for it

we thank you for your continuous tithes and offerings

we thank you for your Holy Day offerings

We ask God to bring a blessing upon you because you do so!

(pause for offering)

Let’s begin in John 7:37: “Now, in the last day, the great day of the Feast, Jesus stood and called out, saying, ‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. The one who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.’ But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, which those who believed in Him would soon receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified” (vs 37-39).

Living waters pictures the Spirit of God, just like it says right here. It says that anyone “…who believes…” in Him.

What if they never had a chance to believe in Christ? Are they lost? Of course, that would be the majority of people, because by the time we get here we’re about 4,000 years of human history and the Holy Spirit had not yet been given. It was to the prophets and certain of the kings in the Old Testament, but in the New Testament that’s the whole of the New Testament and the reason for it.

We’re going to see something that God did that looks like it’s an absolute contradiction to what we just read: that if any would believe. To believe also means to continuously believe; understanding that there has to be repentance in order to receive the Holy Spirit.

God deliberately did not want people to know about this day and the meaning of, and yes, even about Jesus Christ and God’s plan the way God wants it understood. He was going to give to those who would answer the call and become His spirit-begotten sons and daughter awaiting the first resurrection, as we know in God’s plan down to this time.

Let’s see what Jesus Himself said, John 12:37: “Although He had done so many miracles in their presence, they did not believe in Him, so that the word of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled who said, ‘Lord, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?’ For this very reason they could not believe because again Isaiah said” (vs 37-39).

This is what God did, and we will look at some verses that makes this verse appear to be a contradiction of what we read in John 7 and other Scriptures, but it is not when you understand the plan of God!

Verse 40: “He has blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts so that they would not see with their eyes and understand with their hearts, and be converted, and I would heal them.” That’s quite a statement!

How is God going to make it possible for people who did not believe in Him, yet, had not committed the unpardonable sin? What’s going to happen to them?

Verse 42: “But even so, many among the rulers believed in Him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, so that they would not be put out of the synagogue; for they loved the glory of men more than the glory of God. Then Jesus called out and said, ‘The one who believes in Me does not believe in Me, but in Him Who sent Me.’” (vs 42-44).

How can you believe if you’ve been blinded?

How can you believe if you’ve been blinded and lived your life and have died?

What is going to happen then?

Verse 45: “And the one who sees Me sees Him Who sent Me. I have come as a light into the world so that everyone who believes in Me may not remain in darkness. But if anyone hears My words and does not believe, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world… [at that time] …The one who rejects Me and does not receive My words has one who judges him; the word which I have spoken, that shall judge him in the last day” (vs 45-48).

There it is again, the last day. What does he mean with this? We will see in just a minute!

Verse 49: “For I have not spoken from Myself; but the Father, Who sent Me, gave Me commandment Himself, what I should say and what I should speak. And I know that His commandment is eternal life…. [How is that going to happen?] …Therefore, whatever I speak, I speak exactly as the Father has told Me” (vs 49-50).

That’s quite a thing for us to understand! Let’s see something else that Jesus said. Not only does He blind them, but He also hides things in His Word, that even though they may read it, they won’t understand it. But those who have the Spirit of God, love God and keep His commandments, and have been called to the first resurrection will understand!

God has a plan and He has a purpose, and it’s all laid out through the structure of the Sabbath and Holy Days, and putting the Word of God together, rightly!

Matthew 11:25: “At that time Jesus answered and said, ‘I praise You, O Father… [the One Who sent Jesus, also the One we are to believe in] …Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and intelligent…” Isn’t it interesting that God has done this? When they are wise and intelligent:

they reject God

they reject Jesus Christ

they refuse to love and obey God and can’t understand the things that are written and hidden in the Scriptures

“…and have revealed them to babes” (v 25)—spiritual babes; that’s us! Yes, we’re to grow in grace and knowledge and become spiritually mature as we grow and overcome in our lifetime, that is true.

Verse 26: “Yes, Father, for it was well pleasing in Your sight to do this.” God has done this for a purpose and a reason. We will see what that is in a little bit.

Verse 27: “All things were delivered to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father; neither does anyone know the Father except the Son, and the one to whom the Son personally chooses to reveal Him.

Why would God want that when we’re going to read some Scriptures that show that God wants all men saved? That would seem like a contradiction. What does He use to blind people.

Of course, you don’t understand about Satan the devil, and God’s plan for him, unless you keep the Day of Atonement. You may be aware that Satan is around. You may be aware that he is deceiving the world, or that something is wrong with the world, but to understand how God does this… Just like with Adam and Eve, they didn’t believe God, so who did they follow? Satan the devil!

Now let’s see what Paul writes concerning the Gospel; 2-Corintians 4:3: “But if our Gospel is hidden, it is hidden to those who are perishing; in whom the god of this age has blinded the minds of those who do not believe…” (vs 3-4). So, Satan comes along and takes away what people understand (Matt. 13).

“…lest the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (v 4). Why would God want that?

Let’s see some Scriptures that are really quite astounding. God doesn’t reveal everything to everyone. How many people are willing to love and obey God?

Romans 11:25: “For I do not wish you to be ignorant of this mystery, brethren, in order that you may not be wise in your own conceits: that a partial hardening of the heart has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in.” That will not be complete until the return of Christ.

Verse 26: “And so all Israel shall be saved…” All means all. How is that going to be? God dealt with Israel all the way to through time of Christ! Did God not send them off into captivity because of sin? Yes! The ten tribes of Israel and the house of Judah.

“…according as it is written: ‘Out of Sion shall come the Deliverer, and He shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob. for this is My covenant, which I will make with them when I have taken away their sins’” (vs 26-27).

When is that going to be?

How is that going to be accomplished?

He says that all Israel will be saved!

Let’s continue and we will see that what we understand now, Paul didn’t understand in his time because the book of Revelation had not yet been written, which is the key that unlocks all the Scriptures to answer:

What is God going to do to all of those whom He didn’t call?

To all of those whom He blinded?

To all of those whom He gave to be under Satan the devil? Israel and the Gentiles?

It’s an amazing thing! It’s a great and glorious thing! It’s going to glorify God fantastically when we understand how this is going to be, and then understand our part in it!

Verse 27: ‘For this is My covenant, which I will make with them when I have taken away their sins.’ On the one hand, concerning the Gospel, they are enemies for your sakes; but on the other hand, concerning the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sakes” (vs 27-28).

What was the promise to Abraham, the father of the faithful as well as the father of Isaac and Jacob (whose name was changed to Israel)? What was the promise given to Abraham? God told him that his seed would be ‘as the stars of heaven’ and ‘as the sand that is on the seashore.’

The stars are the spiritual seed. The glory of those who will enter into the Kingdom of God when Jesus returns at the first resurrection. The physical seed are the physical children of Israel that have been blinded and hardened. But they still the elect because of their father’s sake.

Verse 29: “Because the gifts and the calling of God are never revoked.” Israel is still Israel, God is still God, the Father is still their Father, and His calling, promises and gifts are never revoked. But the question is when does He give it? What is the gift that we received? The gift of the Holy Spirit!

Paul begins to explain as much as he knows, v 30: “For just as you once did not believe God, but have now been shown mercy through their unbelief, in the same way also, they have not believed at this time in order that through the mercy shown to you, they also may have mercy shown to them…. [When?] …For God has given them all over to unbelief in order that He might show mercy to all” (vs 30-32).

Paul understood that much of it. Had he had the book of Revelation he would have been able to put the Scriptures together and understand it. Because we have that and because God has given us of His Holy Spirit, and has opened our minds to understand His Word—because we love and obey God—we are able to understand. Christ reveals that through His Word. We understand things hidden from the foundation of the world!

Verse 33: “O the depth of the riches of both the wisdom and the knowledge of God! How unfathomable are His judgments and unsearchable are His ways! For who did know the mind of the Lord, or who became His counselor? Or who first gave to Him, and it shall be recompensed to him again? For from Him, and through Him, and unto Him are all things; to Him be the glory into the ages of eternity. Amen” (vs 33-36)

That’s as far as Paul understood. Quite an interesting thing as we go along here.

2-Peter 3 tells us something about God. This is interesting because when you die the Bible calls that sleep. When you perish that is the Lake of Fire.

2-Peter 3:10: “However, the Day of the Lord shall come as a thief in the night in which the heaven itself shall disappear with a mighty roar, and the elements shall pass away, burning with intense heat, and the earth and the works in it shall be burned up.”

How are all going to come to repentance? I want you think about that for a moment. How is it possible? Does all mean all? That He doesn’t want any to perish?

1-Timothy 2:4: “Who desires all men to be saved…” That’s what God desires! What is the limiting factor of that? That’s God’s desire, He wants them all to come to repentance! He desires all to be saved! What is the limiting factor on that? The independent free moral agency He’s given to all of us!

We must all choose!

We must all repent!

We must believe!

All of those things fit into that.

Can men reject salvation? Yes!

Can they commit the unpardonable sin? Yes!

“…and to come to the knowledge of the Truth” (v 4).

How can they come to the knowledge of the Truth

if they have been blinded?

if the Scriptures have been hidden?

if God did not give them understanding?

if God did not reveal it to them?

How is God going to solve that problem?

That’s what this day is all about!

Let’s see what Jesus said about life and resurrection. Then we will go to the book of Revelation and see what those Scriptures can add in understanding so we can know what is going to happen, and how that will take place.

John 5:25: “Truly, truly I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God…”

Did not Jesus raise Lazarus from the dead? Yes, He did!

How did He raise him? He said, ‘Lazarus, come forth!’

Was he raised? Yes!

You read the account in John 11 and everyone was astonished! That was a fantastic thing that happened, and it really was quite a time. John 11 spends quite a bit of time talking about that resurrection.

“…when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear shall live. For even as the Father has life in Himself, so also has He given to the Son to have life in Himself; and has also given Him authority to execute judgment because He is the Son of man. Do not wonder at this, for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves shall hear His voice and shall come forth: those who have practiced good unto a resurrection of life… [the first resurrection] …and those who have practiced evil unto a resurrection of judgment” (vs 25-29). What does that mean? We’ll put some other Scriptures together and see it!

Rev. 20:4 talks about those resurrected to the first resurrection and received eternal life and thrones, and judgment was given to them, and they ruled and reigned with Christ a thousand years as we read in the last part of:

Revelation 20:5: “…This is the first resurrection. Blessed and Holy is the one who has part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power….” (vs 5-6). What does that mean? That those in the first resurrection will be spirit beings, immortal (1-Cor. 15).

Now let’s read the first part of v 5: “(But the rest of the dead…” Who are the “…rest of the dead…”? 1-Cor. 15 says that Christ is the Firstfruit. Afterwards, those who are His at His coming! This also tells us a lot, as well. This tells us very clearly that souls don’t go to heaven. The resurrection to eternal life doesn’t take place until Christ returns.

Christ has not yet returned, but ‘everyone in his own order.’ Why would it say that? Because Paul didn’t realize that John was going to fill in the missing blank! Here is the order:

“(…the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were completed.) The “…rest of the dead…” are all of those who were blinded, not called and had not committed the unpardonable sin.

We know that the Scriptures tell us that those who commit the unpardonable sin will be cast into the Lake of Fire and they will be burned up, which is the second death, and they perish! Now, when person dies the spirit of man goes back to God. If they are converted, have the Spirit of God and are faithful till the end they will be raised to glory, to shine like the sun, shine like the stars of heaven, as promised to Abraham.

Here we’re talking about the “…rest of the dead…” we will find that there are two categories of the “…rest of the dead…”:

those who were blinded and never committed the unpardonable sin

those who have committed the unpardonable sin

Let’s cover #1 first:

Verse 11: “Then I saw a great white throne and the one Who was sitting on it, from Whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead…” (vs 11-12). Who are the dead? “…rest of the dead…”!

Remember that Jesus said that all would hear His voice and will come forth. Some to everlasting life and some to judgment. The book of Daniel says ‘some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.

Verse 12: “And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God…” We will see that this begins with Israel and goes to all of the Gentiles. They’ve lived their life, but were never afforded an opportunity for salvation. They lived their life under Satan the devil. That’s why Satan is first cast into the Lake of Fire, and removed before this resurrection takes place.

Isn’t living under Satan the devil for one lifetime sufficient enough? Yes, indeed! So, God is going to deal with them for salvation. That’s how all who believe can receive the Holy Spirit, all can come to repentance and receive salvation, but they need a second physical life. Some people get all upset and say that this is a ‘second chance.’ No! Because:

if you’re blinded by yourself and Satan the devil

if you lived in a time when Jesus had not yet come

if you lived a decent life without committing the unpardonable sin

then you would fit into that category

That’s most of the people who have ever been from the time of Adam and Eve down to our time. What about all those people who died in the Flood of Noah? Yes, they were sinners, but Christ was not there to offer them salvation!

We find in Gen. 3:15 that the Savior was promised, that He would come and conquer Satan. But He didn’t come for another 4,000 years! All of those people before the Flood were blinded by Satan! Let’s see the answer to the question. It says “…the rest of the dead…” How do we know that is going to happen. Paul writes that all Israel shall be saved! (Rom. 11).

How is that going to happen? Paul didn’t know how, but he knew—according to the Word of God—that it would happen! We saw that all the dead will be raised.

Matthew 12:30: “The one who is not with Me is against Me, and the one who does not gather with Me scatters. Because of this, I say to you, every sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven to men…” (vs 30-31). That’s a blanket category. He doesn’t say just to the Jews or to Israel.

“…except the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit; that shall not be forgiven to men” (v 31). What is the blaspheme against the Holy Spirit?

the rejection of God

the rejection of His Spirit

the spirit of hatred toward God

the spirit of inability to repent because ‘my mind is made up’

as the saying goes!

Are there some who have committed the unpardonable sin who have never been converted? Well, that’s a judgment that only God can make! Only God knows the heart!

But for those sins that are forgivable sins, and you go back and look at how God forgave Manasseh, God forgave Ahab, God forgave David. Look what David did with Bathsheba and the whole affair with that, and God forgave it!

Some will say, ‘What do You mean by that, Jesus?’ He answers it:

Verse 32: “And whoever speaks a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this age… [this age ends with the return of Christ] …nor in the coming age.”

What is the coming age? The Millennium, and then what is called the Great White Throne Judgment! We understand from Isa. 65 that people will live approximately a hundred years. This shows that if:

they weren’t forgiven, because they weren’t called

they weren’t forgiven because Christ wasn’t here

they weren’t forgiven because they didn’t know enough to repent of it

They shall be forgiven! When? In the coming age! This is fantastic!

Verse 38: Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered, saying, ‘Master, we desire to see a sign from You.’ And He answered and said to them, ‘A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of Jonah the prophet. For just as Jonah was in the belly of the whale three days and three nights, in like manner the Son of man shall be in the heart of the earth three days and three nights” (vs 38-40).

Now, notice what Jesus says relating back to Jonah and his prophetic message to the people of the city of Nineveh, the capital of the Assyrians:

Verse 41: “The men of Nineveh shall stand up in the judgment…” What did we read? Judgment was set and the books were opened!

“…with this generation…” (v 41)—and there was about a thousand years separation of Nineveh and Assyria, and the time of the ministry of Jesus Christ.

“…and shall condemn it, because they repented at the proclamation of Jonah; and behold, a greater than Jonah is here” (v 41).

“…stand up in the judgment…” means to be raised from the dead!

Verse 42: “The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation and shall condemn it… [again, well over a thousand years] …because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold, a greater than Solomon is here.” That’s very interesting and very profound!

We’re going to see a key chapter in the book of Ezekiel, which is going to tell us how this is going to be.

(go to the next track)

Ezek. 37 is talking about Israel, the whole house of Israel, which means all of them in all generations down through time who have not been called, who were never a part of the Church of God. They lived their lives blinded, not called, and all of those who have not committed the unpardonable sin will be raised in the first part of the second resurrection. The second part will be for the incorrigible wicked.

Ezekiel 37:1: “The hand of the LORD was on me, and brought me by the Spirit of the LORD, and set me down in the midst of a valley, and it was full of bones.”

If you see bones you know that there was life, and you know that there was death. Otherwise, there wouldn’t be any bones. In order to show a future resurrection, God had to do it this way.

Verse 2: “And He made me walk among them all around. And behold, very many were in the open valley. And lo, they were very dry.” Showing going back years and years and years.

God asked Ezekiel a question. Just picture yourself out in the desert someplace and you come across the skeleton of a man who died. He probably died a terrible death, probably died of lack of water and the heat and no food. There are his bones, poor guy. And someone asks you, ‘Can those bones live again?’ You might say, ‘I doubt it!’ at best. You probably would say no!

Verse 3: And He said to me, ‘Son of man, can these bones live?’ And I answered, ‘O Lord GOD, You know.’ Again He said to me, ‘Prophesy to these bones and say to them…’” (vs 3-4).

How powerful is the Word of God, even though a man speaks it? It’s still the Word of God! Think about that as you study the Bible. Think about what God inspired them to write. Think about that in relationship to the Word of God is a living Word of God, and the words that have been spoken are Spirit and Life as Jesus said.

He told him what to say, “…‘O dry bones, hear the Word of the LORD. Thus says the Lord GOD to these bones, “Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live. And I will lay sinews on you, and will bring up flesh on you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live. And you shall know that I am the LORD”’” (vs 4-6).

That’s really quite a thing to understand! Stop and think about it! What does this tell us? This is a second physical life! This is also saying that at this time, in this second physical life, you will know me. That means that in their first physical life they didn’t know God.

What does it mean to know God? That doesn’t mean just to acknowledge that there is a God! You know Him because you receive His Spirit, because you become converted and you know and understand God! That’s what the New Testament teaches us.

Verse 7: “So, I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I prophesied, there was a noise. And behold, a shaking! And the bones came together, a bone to its bone. And as I watched, behold the sinews and the flesh came upon them, and the skin covered them above. But there was no breath in them” (vs 7-8). So, here are all these bodies out there.

Verse 9: “And He said to me, ‘Prophesy to the wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind, “Thus says the Lord GOD, ‘Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain that they may live.’”’ So, I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army” (vs 9-10).

What did it say in Rev. 20? There were so many there was hardly any room! Think of all the children of Israel down through history who were not called, who were never converted, who just lived their lives.

Think about all the other nation of the world, as well, because we saw what Jesus said in Matt. 12, that those people would be raised with the generation of Noah and with the generation of the Queen of the South, who lived at different times.

This shows that the Gentiles will also be raised, all nations, all people, but to Israel first! Remember what it said in 1-Cor. 15? Everyone in his own order! Here’s the order for Israel, then there will be the order for the Gentiles—their nations and an exceeding great army. Imagine what these people were thinking.

Obviously they don’t have any clothes on, and I imagine they’re thinking: I wonder what this is? Is this heaven? What is going on? Look at all these people! Hey, there’s grandma, grandpa, Uncle Joe and Aunt Martha. Look at these people here, these were my servants at one time. They’re alive! What is this?

we’ll be there to help them

we’ll be there to clothe them

we’ll be there to teach them

This is going to be greatest surprise of all, because God is going to take care of all Israel and all other people, as well.

Verse 11: “And He said to me, ‘Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel…. [that’s who they are, all 12 tribes] …Behold, they say, “Our bones are dried and our hope is lost; we ourselves are completely cut off.”’” They lived and died without the knowledge of salvation!

God blinded them

God closed their eyes

Satan the devil blinded them

they didn’t have the Scriptures

We have the Word of God today and we know as much as we know, because of the Spirit of God and rightly dividing the Word of God, and because we love God and keep His commandments and have His Spirit.

What is it going to be like after the thousand years when all of these people are raised from the dead and the books are opened? Think what the knowledge of God is going to be at that time. Then you will understand why they have to live a hundred years. They have to live a hundred years so that when they’re resurrected they’ve got to come to the point of repentance, baptism and receiving of God’s Holy Spirit. This is really quite something!

How does God do this resurrection? When anyone dies, even if they’re not converted, the spirit of man goes back to God!

What does He do with it? It’s called a sleep! It’s stored!

Where does God store it? Probably right close to His altar!

How big were you when you were conceived?

When the spirit goes back to God, how much space does that take up? Very little, indeed!

So, here they are!

Verse 12: “Therefore, prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up out of your graves, and will bring you into the land of Israel.”’…. [a resurrection to a second life of flesh] …And you shall know that I am the LORD when I have opened your graves, O My people, and have brought you up out of your graves. And I shall put My Spirit in you, and you shall live…” (vs 12-14). An opportunity for salvation that they never had in their first life.

“‘…and I will place you in your own land. And you shall know that I the LORD have spoken it and have done it,’ says the LORD” (v 14). That’s quite a thing!

That’s going to really be something for these people to know, for them to understand, for them to come to conversion. Think of all the teachers that they will have: all of us in the first resurrection, all of those who came into the Kingdom of God through the thousand-year period. Of course, the last generation of the Millennium, they’re going to have to be building houses and making clothes and things like so that when the second resurrection takes place, they’re going to have a place to live, they’re going to have clothes to wear, they’re going to have food to eat. That’s really something when you understand it.

Remember that Satan the devil has been judged, cast into the Lake of Fire and removed. Here they’re going to have an opportunity for salvation. There are going to many different people of many different ages. Who is going to be resurrected? There will be a lot of little children in addition to all the people who have lived their lives to the full.

Also remember that when you were conceived, at the instant you were conceived, everything that you would become was there. The only difference between that conception and you being born, and then living a life after that, was that you had to grow in your mother’s womb.

Do you think that since God is going to do this great fantastic resurrection of those who have been dead and in the grave, that He is going to bring back all of those who have been aborted. Think on this: Could He bring them back as babies at birth, full term babies? Yes, He could! No problem at all!

Why is that important that we understand that that is going to happen? From this point of view: IF that were not possible then Satan would have victory over God! Satan isn’t going to have one victory over God! None! Think of what a time that is going to be; God is going to give to mothers the children that they had aborted. That’s going to be a magnificent undoing of one of the greatest sins of mankind. How about all those little children who were offered in sacrifice to the gods of this world? They’ll be raised back! I just imagine that a lot of people who died, because we’re going to see that the sea gave up the dead, how about those who drown in the ocean? A lake? A river?

They’re all going to be raised! God is going to undo death! The last enemy is death! God knows that He needs all of these people and wants all of them for His new heaven and new earth, because that is going to be a fantastic and wonderful thing, indeed! Virtually barely imaginable for us today.

Revelation 20:11: “Then I saw a great white throne and the one Who was sitting on it, from Whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and no place was found for them.

Verse 12: “And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God; and the books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the Book of Life….” First time it is opened for them. Their names were never written in the Book of Life for eternal life during their first physical life. So, here it’s open for them.

“…And the dead were judged out of the things written in the books, according to their works” (v 12). Well, since the wages of sin is death, if they’re judged according to the works they had in their first life, which did not include the unpardonable sin, they had a life of sin. So, if they’re judged according to those works, then they would have to be executed immediately. This shows and verifies Isa. 65 of

living a hundred years

having time to choose

to grow in grace and knowledge

to understand

to overcome the sins that they had in their first life

to learn to love God

to learn to keep His commandments

be ready to be changed from flesh to spirit

That’s going to be a wonderful time for them; absolutely fantastic!

Verse 13: “And the sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and the grave gave up the dead that were in them; and they were judged individually, according to their works.” The same process of salvation for them as was for us.

Doesn’t Jesus tell us that He judges us according to our works (Rev. 2 & 3)? Yes, indeed! They have to have the same spiritual works that we have.

Verse 14: “And death and the grave were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death.” The second death is that you perish! To die, Jesus said, ‘Anyone who believe in Him shall not taste of death forever.’ Here in this second life they have a chance to believe on Him, just like we have the opportunity now. All of these things get down to what we’ve covered before: independent free moral agency!

Will you choose God?

Will you choose His Way?

Will you love Him with all your heart, mind, soul and being?

That’s what’s going to be their life, and if they have those works they’ll be changed from flesh to spirit. But those who committed the unpardonable sin will be cast into the Lake of Fire.

Verse 15: “And if anyone was not found written in the Book of Life, he was cast into the Lake of Fire.”

Let’s see how Jesus talked about this in relationship to those who are the enemies of God as pictured by the terrors (Matt. 13).

Matthew 13:37: “And He answered and said to them, ‘The One Who sows the good seed is the Son of man.” That is what will be sown during the 100-year period and the second resurrection for those who are brought back to life to receive eternal life.

Verse 38: “And the field is the world; and the good seed, these are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one.” Those who commit the unpardonable sin.

Verse 39: “Now, the enemy who sowed them is the devil; and the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels.” It comes right up to where the Lake of Fire is (Rev. 20); the enemy, Satan the devil.

they are raised back

they have committed the unpardonable sin

they have refused any chance of repentance

they will be cast into the Lake of Fire

—because their names were never written into the Book of Life.

Verse 40: “Therefore, as the tares are gathered and consumed in the fire, so shall it be in the end of this age. The Son of man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His kingdom all the offenders and those who are practicing lawlessness; and they shall cast them into the furnace of fire; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (vs 40-42).

When that happens 2-Peter 3 shows that the Lake of Fire is going to consume the whole earth, and the atmosphere around the earth. All of this is in preparation for the new heavens and the new earth.

Let’s see the great and marvelous promises that are given to those who enter into eternal life. All those in every age, the first resurrection, the second resurrection and the wicked will be no more! They will be burned up and consumed! That’s why it says that ‘the righteous shall walk on the ashes of the wicked.’

Rev. 21—here is the beginning of God’s plan for all eternity.

What is that going to be like?

What is it going to be like to live forever?

Have a spirit mind?

Have a spirit body?

That’s something!

We need a new heaven and a new earth, different than what we have now, because as spirit beings we need things completely changed and having things composed of spirit.

Revelation 21:1: “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away, and there was no more sea.”

That shows no more physical human beings because the ocean is needed to provide oxygen, a cooling of the temperature and so forth of the earth, to keep it constant.

Verse 2: “And I, John, saw the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband…. [beautiful beyond description] …And I heard a great voice from heaven say, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men…’” (vs 2-3)—the whole meaning of the Feast of Tabernacles, and that goes all the way back to Adam and Eve, that God wanted to dwell with them. They could have lived with God in the Garden of Eden. Now here’s God’s plan complete: “…the tabernacle of God is with men…” The Greek there is ‘anthropos’ which means men and women, and of course, made perfect spirit beings!

“…and He shall dwell with them, and they shall be His people; and God Himself shall be with them and be their God. And God shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there shall not be anymore death, or sorrow, or crying; neither shall there be any more pain, because the former things have passed away” (vs 3-4)—gone, over and done!

That’s going to be a marvelous time. Think of what that is. This is what Jesus meant when He said, ‘Enter in the joy of your Lord.’ That’s something!

Verse 5: “And He Who sits on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new.’….” For all the spirit sons and daughters of God: first resurrection, second resurrection.

“…Then He said to me, ‘Write, for these words are true and faithful’” (v 5). They are going to happen! What a magnificent thing this is going to be!

Verse 6: “And He said to me, ‘It is done….’” God’s plan is finished, completed for this phase of it. But what is God’s plan from this time on into all eternity, which we are going to be participating in?

If you think that this is wonderful that we have now, it’s almost beyond even the greatest imagination to understand what it’s going to be like to be a spirit being and live forever and live in New Jerusalem. Those in the first resurrection will live in New Jerusalem; that’s where we will live. Jesus said to the Church of Philadelphia, ‘I will write upon you the name of My city, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of God from heaven.’ We’re reading it here.

“…I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the one who thirsts, I will give freely of the fountain of the water of life” (v 6). Remember where we started in John 7? Rivers of living water! Here it is, eternal life!

Verse 7: “The one who overcomes shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be My son.” That’s an amazing thing! Think of it, brethren:

this is our calling

this is our hope

this is why we’re here

this is why we keep the Feast of Tabernacles

this is why we love God and keep His commandments

this is what he holds out for us

On the other hand, wherever He relates a blessing He gives a warning!

Verse 8: “But the cowardly, and unbelieving, and abominable, and murderers, and fornicators, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone; which is the second death.”

That’s final!

No resurrection from that!

Completely destroyed!

Gone!

Perished!

Here comes a beautiful vision of New Jerusalem coming down out of heaven. Made of the finest of everything!

Verse 9: “And one of the seven angels that had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues came and spoke with me, saying, ‘Come here, and I will show you the bride, the Lamb’s wife.’” That’s where she’s going to live. Christ isn’t going to marry New Jerusalem, the Bride is going to live in New Jerusalem.

Verse 10: “And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, Holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. And her radiance was like a most precious stone, as crystal-clear as jasper stone…” (vs 10-11). Isn’t that profound to understand how this is going to be.

Verse 12: “And the city also had a great and high wall, with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels; and inscribed on the gates were the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel. On the east were three gates; on the north were three gates; on the south were three gates; on the west were three gates. And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and written on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb” (vs 12-14)—built on the prophets and the apostles; Christ Himself the Chief Cornerstone! There you have the fulfilling of it right here.

Verse 15: “And the one who was speaking with me had a golden measuring rod, so that he might measure the city, and its gates and its wall. And the city lies foursquare, for its length is as long as its breadth. And he measured the city with the rod, twelve thousand furlongs; the length and the breadth and the height of it are equal” (vs 15-16). I can’t imagine that, but whatever that is, it’s something!

Verse 17: “And he measured its wall, one hundred and forty-four cubits; the angel’s measure was according to a man’s. And the structure of its wall was jasper; and the city was pure gold, like pure glass” (vs 17-18). I can’t imagine looking through pure gold as if it’s glass. You’ve got to be a spirit being in order to understand that. Then it lists all the foundational stones and the gates, each had a great pearl, a single pearl. I’m sure that wasn’t by a great oyster.

Verse 22: “And I saw no temple in it; for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.” Isn’t that an amazing thing? The Family of God living together!

Verse 23: “And the city has no need of the sun, or of the moon…” It doesn’t mean they no longer exist. It doesn’t need it because it has the light and the glory of the Lamb and of the Father.

“…that they should shine in it; because the glory of God enlightens it, and the Light of it is the Lamb. And the nations that are saved shall walk in its light…” (vs 23-24). Here is the first resurrection, those living in New Jerusalem. The rest of the nations live on the rest of the earth.

What is that going to be like?

What are we going to do?

What will be the purpose of that?

That’s what God is saving until the coming of New Jerusalem. Then we will understand. All we can do is look at that and say, like Paul did when he wrote Rom. 11, ‘O the depths, the unfathomable riches of God.’ The wisdom and righteousness of God! What is that going to be like?

Verse 25: “And its gates shall never be shut by day; for there shall be no night there. And they shall bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it. And nothing that defiles shall ever enter into it…” (vs 25-27).

This is a warning! Just like we have in Rev. 16 about the seven last plagues. It says, ‘The one who has an ear, let him hear.’ So, we hear; this is a warning for us now. You’re not going to receive eternal life if you’re wicked, abominable, or if you are a liar.

“…nor shall anyone who practices an abomination or devises a lie; but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life(v 27).

I love the music that goes with Rev. 22 on the reading of the book of Revelation (truthofgod.org) That’s just beautiful, beautiful music! We can thank Randy Vild for selecting all of that and putting it together. It just pulls it all together. We can only imagine what this is like.

Revelation 21:1: “Then he showed me a pure river of the water of life, clear as crystal, flowing out from the throne of God and of the Lamb…. [the thrones will be right there together] …And in the middle of the street, and on this side and that side of the river, was the Tree of Life, producing twelve manner of fruits, each month yielding its fruit…” (vs 1-2). That shows that the moon has to be there in order to have a month. But New Jerusalem doesn’t need the light of it.

“…and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations” (v 2). The Greek there is ‘therapeian’ that means the maintenance of the nations. How does that work? We don’t know! So, the best way to find out is to be there!

Verse 3: “And there shall be no more curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and His servants shall serve Him, and they shall see His face; and His name is in their foreheads” (vs 3-4). That’s is going to be a wonderful and fantastic time.

What is it going to be like to see Jesus Christ and God the Father face-to-face? That’s going to be a special wonderful thing! And I’m sure that we will be able to do that on whatever occasion we come before God. Think of that!

Verse 5: “And there shall be no night there; for they have no need of a lamp or the light of the sun, because the Lord God enlightens them; and they shall reign into the ages of eternity.” Whatever God’s plan is on into the ages of eternity.

Who knows what it is?

How unfathomable is the universe?

How unfathomable is it that there are trillions of galaxies?

What does all of that mean?

It has to be part of it here. They shall reign into the ages of eternity! Even if we can’t comprehend it, we can have faith that this is so!

Verse 6: “And he said to me, ‘These words are faithful and true… [they will take place; God is a God of Truth; these are the words of Truth] …and the Lord God of the Holy prophets sent His angel to show His servants the things that must shortly come to pass.’ Behold, I am coming quickly….” (vs 6-7).

For our lifetime that is true! However long we have to live, He’s coming quickly! And all of those who have died and are in the grave—which is every Christian up to this point—when they’re resurrected out of that grave, that’s going to be something! That will be the next thing that they will see and think of!

“…Blessed is the one who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book”—and everything that is in it. Go back to Rev. 1 and it says, ‘Blessed is the one who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy of this book.’

Verse 8: “Now I, John, was the one who saw and heard these things. And when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel who was showing me these things. But he said to me, ‘See that you do not do this! For I am a fellow servant of yours, and of your brethren the prophets, and of those who keep the words of this book. Worship God’” (vs 8-9). Brethren, that’s what it’s all about, right there!

Verse 10: “And he said to me, ‘Do not seal the words of the prophecy of this book because the time is near.’” That applies to the time that we are living in right now; “…the time is near…”

Verse 11: “Let the one who is unrighteous be unrighteous still; and let the one who is filthy be filthy still; and let the one who is righteous be righteous still; and let the one who is Holy be Holy still.” The contrast! The wicked will never be there. But if they want to be wicked and stay that way now, they are left out! Here’s why:

Verse 12: “And behold, I am coming quickly; and My reward is with Me, to render to each one according as his work shall be.” That’s why it’s important for us to:

love God with all our heart, all our mind, all our soul and all our being

to trust in Him

to believe His Word

to apply it to our lives

to let nothing come between us and God

Verse 13: “I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last…. [ties together Rev. 1 and 22] …Blessed are those who keep His commandments…” (vs 13-14). Every Protestant needs to read that and understand that they are living a lie if they don’t believe that.

“…that they may have the right to eat of the Tree of Life, and may enter by the gates into the city” (v 14). That’s the ultimate plan of God!

Here again is a warning, v 15: But excluded… [left out] …are dogs, and sorcerers, and fornicators, and murderers, and idolaters, and everyone who loves and devises a lie.” Only pure faithful Truth! That’s why it’s so important for us to overcome this human nature. That’s why it’s a job to work, change and overcome, but:

look at the blessing

look at the reward

look at what God holds out for us

Here’s how He concludes the book of Revelation, and we’ll read this to conclude the Last Great Day, because it will be a great last day!

Verse 16: “‘I, Jesus, sent My angel to testify these things to you in the churches…. [of all the brethren of God] …I am the root and the offspring of David, the bright and morning star.’ And the Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come.’…. [we need to keep preaching the Gospel, teaching the Word of Truth] …And let the one who hears say, ‘Come.’ And let the one who thirsts come; and let the one who desires partake of the water of life freely. For I jointly testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book, that if anyone adds to these things, God shall add to him the plagues that are written in this book. And if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, and from the Holy City, and from the things that are written in this book. He Who testifies these things says, ‘Surely, I am coming quickly.’ Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen(vs 16-21).

Brethren, that’s why this is called The Last Great Day! It pictures the unfolding of God’s eternal plan beyond this earth, beyond this world, into the new heavens and the new earth, and we shall reign into the ages of eternity!

Remember these words as we leave the Feast and have a safe trip home!

Scriptural References:

Leviticus 23:34-35, 37, 36-38

John 7:37-34

John 12:37-40, 42-50

Matthew 11:25-27

1 Corinthians 4:3-4

Romans 11:25-36

2 Peter 3:10

1 Timothy 2:4

John 5:25-29

Revelation 20:5-6, 5, 11-12

Matthew 12:30-32, 38-42

Ezekiel 37:1-14

Revelation 20:11-15

Matthew 13:37-42

Revelation 21:1-18, 22-27

Revelation 22:1-21

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

Numbers 28; 29

Matthew 13

John 11

Revelation 20:4

1 Corinthians 15

Genesis 3:15

Romans 11

Isaiah 65

Revelation 2; 3; 16; 1

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