Will you be one who is “worshipped” in Elohim’s kingdom?

Revelation 3:9, Worship/bow down before your feet. This scripture has puzzled many. Who are these saints before which those who are of the synagogue of Satan will at some time in the future bow down in worship? Who are those who are of the synagogue of Satan?

First, the saints are wearing crowns (verse 11) and they have the name of Elohim written upon them (verse 12). We know that a group of saints will be ruling with Yeshua in his millennial kingdom (Rev 1:6; 5:10). These same will be part of the first resurrection (Rev 20:6), which occurs at Yeshua’s second coming.

Secondly, not all the saints will be kings and priests. There are levels of rewards (and responsibilities) in YHVH’s kingdom depending on how obedient one has been to his Torah-commandments. This Yeshua teaches in Matthew 5:19. Some saints will be the least in his eternal kingdom, while some will be the greatest depending on their level of Torah-obedience.

Similarly, Yeshua identifies two groups in his Parable of the Ten Virgins (Matt 25:1–13). The wise virgins will go into the wedding supper of Yeshua, and presumably will become his bride.

In Revelation chapter three, Yeshua further identifies two groups of believers: those who are spiritually lukewarm and those who are spiritually hot (Rev 3:14–22). It is not a stretch to connect those who are spiritually on fire in Laodicea with those in Philadelphia who have Continue reading

 

A Better Resurrection? First, Second and ??? Place in the Kingdom?

Hebrews 11:35, A better resurrection. This verse indicates that there is more than one resurrection of the righteous dead, and that there is at least one resurrection that is better than another one.

Likely, the first resurrection will be the best resurrection, since the righteous dead saints and the righteous living saints will be resurrected at that time to meet Yeshua in the air at his second coming.

The resurrection/s that will occur subsequent to that (whether it/they will occur/s during the millennium or at the white throne judgment) will likely be inferior to the first resurrection. Why is this?

Those saints who will be part of the first resurrection are those who endured and overcame the world, the flesh and the devil and remained faithful to Yeshua against such opposition. They are the strongest and most righteous saints, since their mettle, loyalty, faith and endurance was tested under the most trying circumstances, and they still remained faithful to Yeshua. They will likely be those who will be greatest in the kingdom of heaven (Matt 5:19).

Those saints who will be resurrected subsequent to that will have had to go through great refining trials because they are spiritually subpar. This will be because they weren’t faithful in living up to the spiritual light they were given, or because not as much was given to them in the first place, so not as much was required of them (note the Parable of the Talents in Matt 25:14–30; Luke 12:48).

Those who come to faith in the millennium will likely have a lower reward, since their overcoming faith didn’t need to be as strong. This is because they lived during ideal times when evil was suppressed because Yeshua was ruling the world and Satan was imprisoned in the bottomless pit, thus making it easier to be a saint.

All this goes to show that there are levels of rewards in the kingdom of heaven (e.g. Matt 5:19; Matt 25:20–23, 29; Rev 2:23; 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21; 20:12), even as there are levels of punishment (e.g. Luke 12:47–48).

Those who are currently lukewarm believers and who turn their lives around now and who open the door of their life to Yeshua (Rev 3:20) becoming red hot for him prior to his first coming (and first resurrection; Rev 3:15) will have a shot at the highest reward in the kingdom; that is, to sit with Yeshua on his throne (Rev 3:21). This  shows the mercy and grace of YHVH in that he can take even lukewarm saints who desire to turn their lives around and to repent and reward them with the highest position in his kingdom.

Lest we get smug in our spiritual complacency, let’s not forget what Peter said, “the righteous are scarcely save” (1 Pet 4:18). Every saint living is lukewarm to one degree or another by YHVH’s highest, righteous spiritual standards. Those who don’t think they are lukewarm are blinded by their own pride and self-righteousness, which is the greatest sin of all! In fact, the Bible teaches that our best righteousness is as filthy rags (Isa 64:6). Yet, at the same time, there is hope for us all to come to the higher spiritual level! This, however, won’t occur without our having to go through the refining fires of trials (Rev 3:18) or, for some, even great tribulation (Rev 7:14) at the end of the age prior to Yeshua’s second coming.

 

May your face shine like the sun!

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Matthew 13:43, Shine forth as the sun. The reward of the resurrected and glorified saints will be that they will shine forth like the sun or stars (Dan 12:3), and like Yeshua (1 John 3:2), whose face shines like the sun (Rev 1:16), for he is the Sun of Righteousness (Mal 4:2), and the light of the world (John 1:6–9; 8:12; 9:5; 12:46), and he will be the light of the New Jerusalem shining in place of the physical sun (Rev 21:23; 22:5; Isa 60:20).

Paul speaks of the resurrection of the saints and their glorification that will occur at that time, and he likens the saints’ appearance to the stars. As stars have different levels of brightness, so too will the saints (1 Cor 15:41–43) in accordance with their levels of rewards commensurate with their level of obedience to the Torah (Matt 5:19; 16:27; Rom 2:6–11; 2 Cor 5:10; Eph 6:8; 1 Pet 1:17; Rev 19:8; 22:12–15).

 

Don’t give up!

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Romans 2:7, Patient continuance in well doing. Scripture speaks of not becoming weary in well doing (Gal 6:9; 2 Thess 3:13). Yeshua in his Olivet Discourse (Matt 5–7) admonishing his disciples says, “But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” (Matt 24:13). The context of this remark is tribulation, betrayal of brethren, the deception of false prophets and false messiahs, wars and rumors of wars, sorrows, famines and pestilence. The saint is engaged in an uphill struggle in their battle against the world, the flesh and the devil (Jas 2:15), or as John states it, “the lusts of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life” (Jn. 2:16). These are the same three areas (body, soul, spirit, 1 Thess 5:23) in which Yeshua was tempted of Satan, the Adversary, in the wilderness (Matt 4:1–11), and in which Adam and Eve were tempted at the tree of knowledge when in describing the forbidden fruit Scripture records: “the tree was good for food [temptation of the flesh] and that it was pleasant/desirous to the eyes [lust of the eyes or temptation of the soul (i.e., the mind, will and emotions)] and a tree to be desired to make one wise [pride of life or temptation of the spirit](Gen 3:6). Enduring and overcoming the world, the flesh and the devil is a lifelong process. Paul echoing Yeshua’s remarks of Matthew 24:13 says in 2 Timothy 2:10, “Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Messiah Yeshua with eternal glory.” What these Scriptures show is that salvation is a process. One is saved upon belief in Yeshua, yet one must work out one’s own salvation with fear and trembling (Phil 2:12) lest one fall away (Heb 6:5), or one’s faith become shipwrecked (1 Tim 1:19).

Patient continuance, enduring and overcoming involves warfare. Paul was well aware of this in his personal struggles in his ministry to advance the gospel of the kingdom of heaven.

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through Elohim to the pulling down of strong holds;) casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of Elohim, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Messiah. (2 Cor 10:3–5)

Put on the whole armour of Elohim, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of Elohim, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of Elohim. (Eph 6:11–17)

The words overcome or overcomes occur 22 times in the Testimony of Yeshua and it is interesting to note that five of the seven churches of Asia Minor are admonished to overcome the result of which is great heavenly rewards (Rev. 2:7, 11, 26; 3:5, 12). The word overcome is the Greek word nikao meaning “conquer, prevail, get the victory.” This is the path to which believers are called. It will be the most difficult trek one will ever make, since all the powers of death, hell and Satan are arrayed against those born not of flesh and blood, but of the Spirit who are in this world, but not of it, who are sojourners and pilgrims passing through and who are citizens of a heavenly kingdom. Yet for those who overcome, endure to the end and continue patiently the rewards are more than humanly imaginable:

But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which Elohim hath prepared for them that love him (1 Cor 2:9 ).

 

The Righteous Will Shine Like the Sun

Matthew 13:43, Shine forth as the sun. The reward of the resurrected righteous will cause them to shine forth like the sun or stars (Dan 12:3), and like Yeshua (1 John 3:2), whose face shines like the sun (Rev 1:16), for he is the Sun of Righteousness (Mal 4:2), who will be the light of the New Jerusalem shining in place of the physical sun (Rev 21:23; 22:5; Isa 60:20).

Paul speaks of the resurrection of the saints or their glorification that will occur at that time, and he also likens the saints’ appearance to the stars. As stars have different levels of brightness, so to will the saints (1 Cor 15:41–43) in accordance with their levels of rewards based on their level of obedience to the Torah (Matt 5:19; 16:27; Rom 2:6–11; 2 Cor 5:10; Eph 6:8; 1 Pet 1:17; Rev 19:8; 22:12–15).