Covenant of promises

The promises of eternal life made possible by Jesus Christ

www.truetestament.org

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 1 The everlasting covenant of God The covenant of God - given to mankind by God - is a covenant of mercy, grace, long suffering, goodness and truth. It is a divine oath in which God has purposed that men and women will be saved from their cursed condition of mortality to a blessed state of immortality (as the angels) to live on this earth for ever (Matthew 22 v 23-30). God created the earth for His pleasure (Revelation 4 v 11), and that pleasure is that the earth will be inherited by a son that God would raise up out of the mortal inhabitants in whom God would be publicly known through obedience to His will and whose earthly nature God would change from being mortal to immortal after his death and resurrection, through whom many ‘sons and daughters’ would be saved. Realisation of this inheritance is subject to the conditions of the covenant that God set, who caused these conditions be recorded by ‘holy men of old’ in the Holy Bible (I Corinthians 15 v 51-55); (Matthew 22 v 30; (2 Peter 1 v 21) which conditions were met in their entirety by Jesus Christ. The covenant of God is a solemn and irrevocable pledge made by God (who never changes) embracing everlasting benefits to be bestowed by God upon any men or women who become willingly bound to Him as faithful subjects through faith in Jesus Christ. The oath has predetermined conditions that are just and honest, open to belief and sufficiently substantial to be embraced by faith in any man or woman as an oath unto their salvation. The conditions of the oath are non-negotiable in interpretation and are contained in the scriptures as an open invitation from God to be agreed to by any man or woman, in order for them to volunteer to enter into that covenant by reciprocation of the oath as a bond for life. Entrance into the hope of the covenant of everlasting life on this earth is by baptism into the death of Christ - and continuance therein – in which continuance there is a joyful increase of hope in the gift of the eternal benefits that are promised within the covenant and an encouragement to keep the conditions of the covenant in inward happiness. The Exodus from Egypt - example of the Covenant of God When Paul wrote to the Christian’s in Corinth he referred to the exodus of the Children of Israel from Egypt when they passed through the Red Sea as a figure of baptism (1 Corinthians 10 v 1-2). The teaching of the exodus is a series of significant incidents beginning with, 1) Israel’s servitude to the Egyptians, 2) the Passover feast and passage through the Red Sea and 3) the receiving of the words of the will of God (the law) at Sinai and the reciprocal vow of the children of Israel to serve God alone and to keep all His commandments. In this series of incidents which were overruled by God, His principle and teaching of baptism was established and made ready to be introduced when the type of the Passover lamb was fulfilled in Jesus Christ. The teaching of the Exodus remains valid to this day to provide a simple understanding for us which is essential for our intelligent baptism. For our baptism to be a meaningful, and for us to embrace a real hope of salvation by resurrection from the dead and redemption from an otherwise eternal grave, we must have a simple uncomplicated understanding and a sincere acknowledgement of the

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first principles of truth taught in these events. These principles are described in the following chapters. ********************* Chapter 2 The creation God created the heavens and the earth in 6 days for His pleasure according as it is written, “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.” (Revelation 4 v 11). The pleasure of God is that the earth will be inherited by His son (Psalm 2), who by keeping of the conditions of the covenant of God when he was a mortal man would give God the pleasure He desired, as it is written, “And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3 v 17), and again, “While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.” (Matthew 17 v 5). The creation of the heaven and the earth was deliberate and was done by the angels according to the plan of God, “By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast.” (Psalm 33 v 6) and again, “For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.” (Isaiah 45 v 18). *********************

Chapter 3 The purpose for creation The purpose for which the earth was created was that God should be a Father (Psalm 103 v 13) and that His firstborn son (a son of man, Matthew 1 v 16); and the son of God, John 1 v 34) and a family of friends as his companion (after his likeness, John 15 v 14) should inherit it for ever (Matthew 19 v 29); (Matthew 25 v 34). The first son Adam, proved disloyal to the oath but the second son Jesus Christ, proved faithful to the covenant (Romans 5 v 17); (I Corinthians 15 v 22 & 45) and was given the title by God of the firstborn and rightful inheritor of the earth (II Samuel 7 v 12-14); (Isaiah 9 v 6-7); (Ezekiel 21 v 27). The creation, and the purpose for that creation, are inseparably united by the covenant of God which is an immutable oath that encompasses both the work of creation of the heaven and the earth by His Spirit, and the work of the new creation (a righteous family on earth) that He is still doing by the power of the Holy Spirit, to the unfailing

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end that God will complete the purpose for which He created the heaven and the earth in the beginning. *********************

Chapter 4 The covenant of God before the sin of Adam and Eve Before the sin of Adam and Eve the covenant of God was a simple oath that bound mankind together with God and allowed that Adam and Eve should enjoy the bounty of the perfect creation of God where all creatures were at peace with each other and where they were set to dress the Garden of Eden without any limit of time, but with the condition that Adam and Eve keep the law of God as loyal and trustworthy servants. This allowed them to eat of every fruit of the garden with the exception of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, whereupon if they did, a time limit would be placed on them by the termination of their life in death (Genesis 2 v 15-17). God purposed that if man did brake His uncomplicated covenant by disregarding the law of the oath then God would then begin to reveal the full extent of His covenant with mankind (which was always in His mind) by making known to them the fullness of His will in many different ways, and that this purpose (encapsulated in His covenant) would become known as the mystery of God (Ephesians 3 v 9); (Colossians 1 v 26-27); (I Timothy 3 v 16). This revelation was to be by promises of God to man, by the Law of God, by prophecy, by inspired writings, by the Gospel records and letters of the apostles, by events in the history of the faithful which God overruled, and by no means the least, by the natural creation of God (Romans 1 v 20). God purposed that the whole revelation would be over a long period of time and would be concluded in the writings of the apostles. During the time up to the apostles God chose that He would reveal His purpose by ‘open vision’ directly to faithful men and women, whereafter (after the death of the apostles) God chose that He would reveal His purpose only by preservation of the books of His word and by enlightenment to the meaning of those words by a restricted measure (sufficient for understanding and character change and no more) of the Holy Spirit working in those that do the will of God according to His word, and not by direct ‘open vision’. God is faithful to His part of the covenant but Adam proved to be an infidel to his part and therefore the conditions of the oath were enacted by changing the nature of Adam from being of unlimited duration to mortal. The Hebrew word for covenant has the sense of that which goes between two divided parties and joins them together in mutual benefit, in much the same way as a legal covenant does today. From the creation of Adam to his sin there was a division between God and man, in that God is eternal and cannot sin, whereas Adam was neither mortal or immortal but enjoying a life span limited only by obedience, but with the ability to sin. The sin of Adam opened a breach between God and man which was so wide and deep that it could only be bridged according to the terms of the full extent of the covenant of God which had

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God been figuratively ‘hidden’ by types within the record of the physical creation of the earth. By the sentence of death being imposed upon Adam and Eve, they no longer had a limitless time to enjoy the benefits of the covenant of God and as such the full extent of the covenant of God could not be realised. But God is faithful and He had covenanted when He created the earth that it was to be created for a family who would govern that creation with the laws of His will, and over that family God would place a man in His own image (a Son) as the head, and that companion-family of friends would help the Son of God to rule the earth for ever, and so began the long and slow revealing of the beauty of His covenant, which will not be fully comprehended by anybody until it is completed according to the promise of God, “For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him.” (Isaiah 64 v 4). ********************* Chapter 5 The covenant of God after the sin of Adam and Eve The covenant of God is eternal and does not change and was with God before the earth was formed (Proverbs 8) nor can His purpose for creating the earth be thwarted because of the sin of Adam and Eve (Isaiah 45). After the sin of Adam and Eve, the details of the full extent of that covenant began to be revealed, which showed that a Son of God was promised who would keep the law of God as a faithful son to his Father (John 5 v 19-20) and who would be given a companion of many members, who would be formed - by his Father - over a period of time prefigured in the 6 days taken to create the heavens and the earth. These 6 days were a figure for the time to be taken for the outworking of the fullness of the creation that God had in mind when He created the physical heaven and earth (i. e. a day for a 1000 years, II Peter 3 v 8). This means that over a period of about 6000 years God would work to replace the wilful race of the mankind of Adams' descent by raising up another family - through another son - who in response to the love and faithfulness of God would redeem a companion of many people from death to become a composite family (whose father is God) who will rule the world during a ‘Sabbath of rest’ (the 7th day) of 1000 years, during which God would rest after completing that part of His new creation, with a further adding of members after the 1000 years of the kingdom (the 7th mellenium). Thereafter there would be an eternal government of God over an earth where there is no curse or death (Revelation 20 v 11-15), and, “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.” (I Corinthians 15 v 26). So sure was the purpose of the covenant of God before He created the heaven and the earth, that the greater son raised up by God specifically to inherit the earth (of whom the first son Adam was a failure, (Luke 3 v 38); (Romans 5 v 19) was in the mind of God as He created the earth and was the sole motivation for His handiwork according as the apostle wrote of the second son Jesus Christ, “Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:

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In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the pre-eminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell;” (Colossians 1 v 13-19). Jesus did not pre-exist but was a reality in the mind and eye of God long before he was born to such an extent that God created the earth specifically for him, so that God (as a Father) would have everlasting pleasure, in the same way that any son is in the mind of a prospective father who anticipates and plans for his birth with love and pleasure. ********************* Chapter 6 The Covenant of God in the fullness of creation God finished the work of the physical creation of the heaven and earth in 6 days but has, after the fall of man, continued to work towards the fullness of His creation, as it is written, “For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain.” (Isaiah 66 v 22) and again; “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.” (Isaiah 65 v 17) where the ‘former’ creation is the reign of the enmity in mankind introduced by the weakness of Adam and Eve and the ‘new’ creation is the government of God by Jesus Christ over the whole earth which will be liberated from the curse, as foretold in the scripture, “Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.” (Isaiah 9 v 7). The covenant of God is revealed throughout the whole of the Holy Bible in many different ways, by word (the promises, the Law, the Psalms, the prophets, the gospels and epistles), by action (the biblical record of the lives of men and women) and by the natural or physical creation and some of those are now considered. ********************* Chapter 7 The Covenant of God in revealed in creation Adam and Eve Adam was the first son of God who proved to be disloyal to his benefactor and was justly stripped of his favoured position as the firstborn inheritor of the earth by the sentence of decay and death that was set upon him, upon all mankind and the earth

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God (Genesis 3 v 16-19). There was therefore to be a further son to be born who contrary to Adam, would prove to be faithful to his Lord, who would be a loyal protector of the word of God and a strong provider for his wife and would ensure that the relationship with his wife would be according to the will of God revealed in the physical creation of Adam and Eve (Genesis 2 v 24-25). The creation of Adam and Eve on the 6th day reveals the full extent of the object of the pleasure that God sought in creation and is embodied in the covenant of God, in that God would raise up a son and a bride-helper of His choice who together will inherit the earth for ever. The record of the creation of Adam was unique, “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” (Genesis 2 v 7) and by this miracle, set the pattern that taught that if Adam failed, God would raise up a second son (by His will) who would also be formed by a miracle but would have no more privileges than Adam. In the fullness of time Jesus Christ was created directly by God by the action of the Holy Spirit in Mary, a mortal virgin, contrary to natural experience, “And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1 v 35). Thus both men were formed by direct intervention of God according to His will and neither had an advantage over the other, any more than we (who contrarily were born by the will of our parents) have an advantage over any other human being, but Jesus became the ‘new’ man of the Holy Spirit, the Son of God simply by obedience, “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered” (Hebrews 5 v 8). The creation of Eve, however, was significantly different because she was created out of the body of Adam as it is written, “And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.” (Genesis 2 v 22), where the word ‘bone’ means in the original ‘that which is strong’, and the word ‘made’ means ‘to build up’ piece by piece as a building is constructed. The result was the creation of a man and a woman (out of the man) that was a sublime, holy, unbreakable union that is the essence of the covenant of God and which still remains as the reason for the creation of the earth and as the ultimate focus of the pleasure of God, and is the key to the ‘mystery of God’ referred to by the apostles on several occasions, “For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.” (Ephesians 5 v 30-32). Let us consider the details of the wisdom of God in this creation. Jesus Christ was conceived by direct intervention of God through the power of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1 v 35) and in like manner (after the example in Eve) the multitudinous woman bridecompanion of Jesus Christ is also to be formed by direct intervention of God through the power of the Holy Spirit over a period of 6000 years, the period of the ‘new creation’ (Isaiah 65 v 17). As the formation of Eve was out of the deep sleep of Adam, so the formation of the ‘new’ woman is as a result of the deep sleep of death of Jesus Christ (Romans 6.v 3-5), and as a rib bone ‘of strength’ was taken out of Adam

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God to form Eve, so a representative part of the strength of the character of Jesus Christ forms the basis for the formation of the character of each member of the composite ‘new’ woman who collectively will be the saints. According to the Divine pattern of creation of Adam, the bones of a body form the skeleton of the body, the frame work that, with the joints, give the body rigidity and agility, so that the body is able to do a multitude of tasks. This physical phenomena is used to describe the spiritual body of the new man Christ, in that the bones of the skeleton of his soul were the strong laws and commands of God which allowed him to stand upright in righteousness, to be agile in spirit so that he could outwit the ‘wiles of the devil’, be strong in faith to enable him to engage the enmity in battle and to overcome it because it was written of Jesus that ‘not a bone of him should be broken’ (John 19 v 36) after the teaching of the Passover lamb (Exodus 12 v 46). This came to pass literally when he died earlier than it was normal in a crucifixion (so the usual practice of breaking the legs to prevent escape from the cross was not carried out) to fulfil the fact that Jesus never broke one command of God. Of these strong bones of obedience to the word of God (of the bones of the ribs cage, the bones closest to the spiritual heart and vital organs of Jesus) God is building up a companion for him (from that spiritual 'rib bone') to be a wife to share the inheritance of the earth, where that 'rib bone' represents the specific command of Jesus ‘that we love our one another as he has loved us’ which command is taken from the example of the love that Jesus showed to God, as it is written, “If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love … … … This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you … … … These things I command you, that ye love one another.” (John 15 v 12,10 & 17), and “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” (John 14 v 23). Upon this basis, the skeleton-like framework of our faith is to be strongly built according to the covenant of God and if and when we loose the power of the meaning of this command in our lives - the spirit of our character will become weak and cumbersome and we will become as one of those who metaphorically have no 'backbone', thus retarding our ability to engage in conflict with the enmity. By baptism into the death of Christ (Romans 6 v 3) we enter into the covenant of God to take hold of the ‘bone’ of this command, to keep it with the strong and agile faith that God will by the Holy Spirit (through His covenant in Christ Jesus) reshape our character and prepare us unto sanctification to be ‘built up’ (as a building is built up, (II Samuel 7 v 12-16); (I Peter 2 v 1-10) as interlocking members in fellowship with others into the composite bride-wife of Christ, as it is foretold in the Psalms and by the apostle, “My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.” (Psalm 139 v 1516) where ‘substance’ is framework of bones or a skeleton. Paul used the same analogy for this new creation of God in Christ, “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. … … …For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit … … …For the body is not one member, but many. … … …Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” (I Corinthians 12 v 12, 13, 14 & 27), and again “But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” (Ephesians 4 v 15-16). When Eve was finally ‘built up’, God presented her to Adam in a holy marriage ceremony of to a union of fidelity (Matthew 22 v 1-13) as a foretaste of the greater fulfilment of His covenant when God will present His Son with the chaste bride of the saints (II Corinthians 11 v 2) made ready over a period of approximately 6000 years, when the angels and all creation will rejoice, “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.” (Revelation 19 v 7) at which time Jesus will exclaim the spirit of the words of Adam when he received Eve as his wife “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh” (Genesis 2 v 23). The covenant of God is deeply embedded within His creation and has been a daily witness to every man and woman in every age for 6000 years, and is the reason why fornication, infidelity and lax moral behaviour is so abhorrent to God. The teaching of the covenant of God embodied in the sanctity of marriage is only a mystery if we become entangled with our wandering fleshly mind, with hypocritical pious traditions, stultifying church protocol, psuedo-religious education and lax spiritual morals for the sake of friendship which all direct us away from simple truths. The outworking of the covenant of God therefore is the pleasure that God desires to enjoy in a family of righteousness, in a threefold cord of 1) a Father that pitieth His children (Psalm 103 v 13), 2) a Son in His perfect image (Matthew 3 v 17); (Matthew 17 v 5); (John 14 v 9) and 3) a daughter-in-law of many righteous people (Revelation 21 v 9-27). Adam and Eve destroyed this relationship by their disobedience, but which has been renewed by the righteous obedience of Jesus Christ who immediately before his death prayed to God that he had finished the work that God had set him to realise His pleasure of an eternal threefold chord, “These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: … … …I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. … … … I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word. … … … And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. … … … That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. … … … And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: … … … I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.” (John 17).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God This is the threefold chord that Solomon referred to in the book of the Ecclesiastes, “Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. … Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone” … And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4 v 9-12) where to ‘withstand’ means to ‘stand in reverence’ as described in Solomon’s own actions when he prayed to God on behalf of Israel, “For Solomon had made a brazen scaffold, of five cubits long, and five cubits broad, and three cubits high, and had set it in the midst of the court: and upon it he stood, and kneeled down upon his knees before all the congregation of Israel, and spread forth his hands toward heaven” (II Chronicles 6 v 13). By this we understand that God ‘prevailed’ against man by passing the sentence of death upon him and then another son stood in reverence in the breach by glorifying God and dying for a companion wife who as a faithful betrothed spouse responded in unity with his victory, thus fulfilling the pleasure of God by uniting God with His offspring for ever as the Revelation foretells when referring to God and the saints, “And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads.” (Revelation 22 v 4), and when shown as the 144,000 (Revelation 14 v 1-5), as the 12 tribes of Israel (Revelation 7 v 1-9), the Redeemed, (Revelation 7 v 10-17) and the holy city (Revelation 21 v 10-27). The covenant of God is bound within the sanctity of a perfect marriage of faith and fidelity where Jesus Christ and the saints come together with vows that, in the eyes of God, cannot be broken and form a union that will last for ever, and is prefigured for us in the inseparable vows of both the physical bodily co-joining of a man and a woman and their civil vows of a verbal oath who come together in ‘marriage’ as a daily witness of the covenant of God with mankind. This principle of the covenant of God was at the forefront of the mind of the Psalmist when he rejoiced in the natural creation of God, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. … There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. … Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun, … Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race.” (Psalm 19 v 1-6). ********************* Chapter 8 The day and night sky It is not possible to be unmoved by the splendour and majesty of the sky in its daily encapsulation of our own small world, and in its apparent traverse over our heads in a constant and predictable formation, according to the annual changes of the seasons merging from one to the other. It is a silent witness that proclaims with a loud voice to those who seek the covenant of God that His purpose is real, true and will be concluded.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The sun and moon The principle of the physical and civil co-joining of a man and a women in holy matrimony embodied within the covenant of God is made clear through the creation of Adam and Eve as an unbreakable union as Jesus taught, “Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matthew 19 v 6). The purpose of their co-joining was to replenish the earth with a family of mankind, all in the image of God and after His likeness (Genesis 1 v 28) and was prefigured for our benefit in the creation of the sun and the moon working together to rule the earth according to the will of God their creator (Genesis 1 v 16). The sun is the focal point of the solar system and radiates energy and light to all the planets (sustaining all life on earth) and God has used the sun as a type of the focal point of all His work of creation, a figure of a son of God around whom the whole of the work of God revolves, as it is written, “But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall” (Malachi 4 v 2). This speaks of the return of Jesus Christ to the earth to fulfill all the promises of God, as being like the dawn sunrise of the new day heralding the rulership of the law of God throughout the whole world (II Peter 1 v 19). The life of Jesus was as the shining light of the morning star in a darkened world, so he will (by the covenant of God) be as the light of the sun that will dispel all darkness from the face of the earth. To complete the figure God created the moon as a companion to the sun and a witness to the inhabitants of the earth. As the moon is a reflector of the light of the sun, so the 'faithful' are reflectors of the light of God through Jesus Christ, who one day will be united to, and be the eternal companion of Jesus (the sun) with no glory of her own, but that only of her husband, as it is written in the Song of Solomon of the mystery of the love between these two people “Who is she that looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners?” (Song of Solomon 6 v 10). The stars The stars are fixed in their location in the heavens and are both points of reference to the passing seasons and as direction navigation on the earths face. They stand in unity and accord, reliable and never failing, a multitude coalesced as one as we pass them in the rotations of the earth. As confirmation that a 'multitude' will make up this bride-wife of Christ embodied in the covenant of God, God created the consellations of the stars (the Solar system) to beautify His creation and to emphasize His promises and purpose foretold in the creation of both Adam and Eve, and the sun and moon, in a third confirmation of the creation of a multitudinous family of righteous people that will inherit and have dominion over the earth for ever, all due to the zealous work of the beloved Son of God and the mercy of God. God extends a welcome through Jesus Christ and His covenamt to any member of the human race to enter into that covenant by obedience to the will of God, which will are the terms and conditions of the oath.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Abraham was a man who responded to the conditions of the covenant of God by obedience to His will and God gave him the promises of His covenant which concerned a family of people who are referred to as his mortal ‘seed’ which would be in numbers as the stars in heaven for multitude. As an assurance to us of the truth of the fulness of this promise there has been a literal fulfilment of the diverse but distinct multiplication of his seed (which is unique in the history of mankind) in that both Jew and Arab are direct descendants of Abraham. So God told him to “Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.” (Genesis 15 v 5). In subsequent promises God also spoke of an eternal inheritance on earth for a family of people also referred to as the ‘seed’, who not only would be in number as the stars for multitude but would be as shining lights of differing intensity, of which the brightest would signify a singular seed, Jesus Christ, (Galatians 3 v 16) who would overcome the enemy of God, the enmity, and thus unite himself and his companion (which is his seed by faith, Galatians 3 v 27-29) as one with God. This is the focus of the pleasure that God purposed when He created the heaven and earth, so Abraham was promised, “That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies. And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice” (Genesis 22 v 17-18). Abraham was told that this inheritance would be an eternal inheritance on earth and that for his direct natural descendant seed, inheritance would be in the land where he was journeying, which was the land then known as Canaan, “And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: … For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. … And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered. … Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee.” (Genesis 13 v 14-17). Isaac, the son of Abraham (by promise and by miracle) had the same promise given to him, “And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed” (Genesis 26 v 4). Daniel was also a man of unswerving faith in the covenant of God and by obedience to law of God he entered into that same covenant that Abraham had done and the same covenant that we do in Christ, and he was inspired to record more detail of the purpose of the covenant of God that is essential in understanding the covenant. Concerning the return of Jesus Christ to the earth to establish the kingdom of God he wrote; “And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.” (Daniel 12 v 2-3)

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God We are able to look at that same night sky that Abraham, Isaac and Daniel did, and remember the same eternal covenant of God that they remembered, and to recall that a family of righteous mortal people will be changed from mortality to immortality to live for ever on this earth in a perfect state with no pain, no sorrow, no decay and no death (Revelation 21 v 4). And as we look at the night sky we will remember the ordinance of God that the moon with the stars were set to ‘rule the earth by night’ and are used by God to show that this is the role that God has purposed for His saints, and so we can understand the scripture which says that the 'heaven and the earth shall pass away' and a 'new heaven' will replace it in that the ‘old’ is the rulership of mankind and the ‘new’ is the rulership of righteousness (Isaiah 65 v 17; II Peter 3 v 910). As we continue to look at that vast dome of blackness punctuated by the resplendent bursts of starlight we also notice the differing intensities of the varying stars and realise that there are saints who have done far more in obedience to the will of God to glorify God than we have, we will remember the examples of Noah, Daniel and Job of whom it was said, “Though Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, as I live, saith the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.” (Ezekiel 14 v 20) and we will begin to realise that without doubt they will be present in the kingdom of God, whereas we will be fortunate to be one of the smallest and most dim of stars. The stars are fixed and never move according to the command of God (Psalm 33 v 69); (Job 38 v 4-7 & 31-33), and are so placed for us to remember how small we are, and to rejoice in the handiwork of the Almighty God in showing to us the token of His covenant so that we also can say, “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?” (Psalm 8 v 3-4) and never be tempted to worship the raw beauty of the stars in the vastness of the night sky, as John was told when he was overawed by the shear splendour of power of God, that he was only to worship God who made all things for His pleasure (Revelation 22 v 8-9) Of all the brighter stars, there is one that is the brightest of them all and can only be seen in its full glory immediately before dawn to remind mankind of the covenant of God that there will be a dawn of a new day of righteousness, the herald of which will be the ‘light of the world’ (the Lord Jesus Christ) in his victory over the enmity, and he as the day star of the covenant of God, “We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts” (II Peter 1 v 19), and again in the Revelation, “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.” (Revelation 22 v 16). Every night we are enclosed by this vast infinite dome of resplendent stars shouting out to us the promise of the Divine purpose and calling us to seek out the covenant of God to enter into it and to keep its conditions, and even when it is cloudy, we know by simple faith that the stars are always in their place and so our response in

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God obedience to the covenant will also be by faith, a proving that we believe in what we cannot always see with our eyes. ********************* Chapter 9 Blue sky God did not set the stars in their positions at random (Job 38), He set them according to the pleasure of His purpose and created rotation of the eather so that the bright morning star was the herald of the dawn of a new day at the end of a dark night, in order that we may be instructed about the shining example of the righteous life and obedient death of Jesus Christ as the bright and morning star (where the light of the word of God ruled over him with a brightness greater than any other man, II Peter 1 v 19-21) and so God teaches that Hw will create (and did so) a shining herald of the 'dawn' of a new day, a 'day' of 1000 years and beyond where rulership over the earth is a reign of the light of God as bright and as penetrating as the sun. As the inky blackness of the night sky fades when the light of the sun penetrates the atmosphere, the starry black dome turns to blue, but by faith we know that the stars are still in their position unseen by us due to the intensity of the sunlight. So, as by night we are enclosed by a sky of stars that teaches us of the covenant of God that mortal beings will be made immortal, fixed and sure for ever in the heavenly rulership of the earth according to the choice of God, so the dome-like enclosure of the blue sky is also a daily reminder of that very covenant, according as Daniel prophesied, “And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.” (Daniel 12 v 3) where the ‘brightness of the firmament” is the blue sky we see. We known why the sky is blue, and we know why it is yellow at sunset when rain is soon due and why it is red when no rain is due (Matthew 16 v 1-3) because as each molecule of air, created by God to form the firmament, reflects the rays of light from the sun they scatter them earthwards at distinct angles according to the colours of the rainbow, where blue is directed at a greater angle than red (hence blue when the sun is up and red when it is almost down) but during the day all the colours reunite to give us the clear white combination of the whole spectrum of seven colours to lighten our day. After this divinely created phenomena, the pattern creation teaches us of the purpose of God that each sanctified member (as a molecule of air) willingly bound in the firmament of the covenant of God (through Christ Jesus) absorbs the whole spectrum of the white-light of the word of God and by obedience to that word they redistribute the light of the word by the example of their lives, and silently witness that they are bound within the covenant of God in Christ for all their neighbours to see, and teach of a time when Jesus has returned to the earth when the perfected saints will be as the ‘firmament of heaven in its clearness’ to rule over the earth for ever by the word of the covenant of God (Matthew 5 v 14-16). It is from the creation of the firmament and the light of the sun that we understand that God has chosen blue as the colour that represents His covenant with the mankind, in both the hope of the promises of that covenant and the conditions God has set for

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God those who respond to it. To confirm the hope of the covenant, God allowed the angels to meet mortal men and to eat and drink together, to teach us of the future time when mortal man would be as the angels, as it is written of the elder of Israel “And they saw the God of Israel: and there was under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in his clearness. And upon the nobles of the children of Israel he laid not his hand: also they saw God, and did eat and drink.” (Exodus 24 v 10-11) where the sapphire is blue and the ‘body of heaven in his clearness’ is the daytime sky. Similarly, to confirm the conditions of that covenant, the colour of blue was endorsed as the token of the law of God (which though we do not keep that law, the spirit of the law is very much alive in Christ) and, as we are surrounded by the dome of blue every day, to the north, south, east, west and overhead (cloud may obscure it, but we do not doubt that it is only a few miles above us) so Israel were required to wear a hem of blue on all their garments to remind them to walk within the conditions of the covenant of God, “Speak unto the children of Israel, and bid them that they make them fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a ribband of blue” (Numbers 15 v 38). It was this hem on the robe of Jesus that the woman touched whose life was ebbing away, and by her faith in the conditions of the covenant typified by the blue hem, was healed as a prefigurment of the future healing of the covenant of salvation from eternal death (Matthew 9 v 20-22). As we therefore look at the blue of the sky, which as an awesome dome surrounds our daily life we also can remember the promises of the covenant of God with the same faith of that woman, we can recall the conditions of the covenant of God, “thou shalt love the Lord thy God”, “thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself”, “if ye love me keep my commandments,” “greater love hath no man than he lay down his life for his friends” and we can recall that under the law of the tabernacle the High Priest (as a figure of Christ) was to be arrayed in a robe of blue to teach that the greater high priest (Jesus Christ) would be the one through whom the fulness of the covenant would shine. Similarly, the tent of the tabernacle (which teaches of the House of God that He will dwell in with His family for ever) was covered with a final covering of blue (sealskin, but rendered ‘badger’ skins in the English translation Exodus 26 v 14). We are therefore without excuse if we neglect to remember the promises and the commandments of the covenant of God, because the creation in which we live is full of the teaching of the purpose of God. As Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Joseph had no Bible to read and read again but retained the knowledge of the wisdom of God passed from their fathers, so we are able with our limited knowledge of the wisdom of the Bible to believe and reaffirm our faith by the constant witness of the natural creation - formed for the pleasure of God - for our instruction and learning. We do not need volumes of detailed knowledge to take hold of and remain in the covenant of God, because the covenant of God is for the uncomplicated ‘simple’ minds of babes and sucklings “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God avenger.” (Psalm 8 v 2), and of little children “And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18 v 3). The truth of the covenant of God is not for the selfeducated, self-styled religious leaders, it is not for the university educated 'divines', it is not for the 'rulers-over-the-laity' who decide for themselves what is right and what is wrong, it is for mature men and women who are innocent in the simple faith. The clouds When God created the earth within the heavens, He did it according to His purpose and in His kindness and mercy (to have never left that purpose without witness) He made it so that our view from the earth is that we are surrounded with blue sky by day and by starry blackness by night to remind us of His everlasting covenant with mankind, but when the clouds obscure our direct vision of this witness of the sky we can have no excuse if we forget the glorious promises of that covenant or if we neglect to keep the conditions of that covenant all of which God has recorded in His word, because the clouds are used by God to teach us of how He distributes, disseminates and spreads the good news of His covenant, that it is either by refreshing rain of blessing “Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth. My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass” (Deuteronomy 32 v 1-2), or by the darkness and gloominess of His word of judgement on the unrepentant (Zephaniah 1 v 14-18). Until that time of judgement the mercy of the appeal of God is always present, “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon .. .. .. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. .. .. .. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: .. .. .. So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.” (Isaiah 55 v 7-11). As the rain of the clouds spread water across the ground to enable growth and fruit so the word of God in faithful messengers spread the word of God to hearts that seek to enter into and keep the covenant of God, “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us” (Hebrews 12 v 1). ********************* Chapter 10 The creation used by God to teach of His covenant Creation, in all its detail, witnesses to the truth of the hope of the covenant of God and God uses them to illustrate the power of His purpose so that uncomplicated humble people can understand His will, as well as the more educated and experienced –

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God provided they also have the humility of mind needed for inclusion into the covenant of God. Plants such as barley and wheat (Matthew 13 v 1-26), mustard and hyssop (Luke 13 v 19) & (Luke 17 v 6); (Psalm 51 v 7); (John 19 v 28-30), grass and thorns (I Peter 1 v 24); (James 1 v 10-11); (Matthew 13 v 1-26), minerals such as sand and rock (Genesis 22 v 17); (Psalm 18 v 2); (Matthew 16 v 18), dust and ashes (Genesis 2 v 7); (Job 42 v 6), water and snow (John 4 v 14); (Isaiah 1 v 18); (Isaiah 55 v 7-11), light and darkness (Matthew 6 v 22-23), clean and unclean creatures (Leviticus 11), fruit and trees (James 5 v 7); (John 15 v 1-15); (Isaiah 61 v 1-3) and many more. These are used by God to show diverse details of His love that all shine like facets on a diamond by reflecting the glory of His wisdom and purpose with mankind, and show what he requires of us as individuals to be embraced in the hope of His covenant, so that we are without excuse if we fail to recall to mind the covenant of God when we joy at the beauty of creation, as Micah wrote, “He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?” (Micah 6 v 8). Just one of these infinitely beautiful creations will now be observed in the light of the wisdom of God as to why He made them as He did. There is no chance or adaptability other than that imposed by mans' mismanagement of the earth. The Tree - a creation of the 3rd day The tree is just one a particular example that stands as a silent testimony to the allpowerful hand of God in every land of the earth. Trees provides food for man, oxygen for the air, carbon dioxide from the air, shade from the sun, protection from the wind, material for building, food for man, bird and beast, fuel for heat and pleasure to the eyes. They are just one example of the marvelous wonder of the power of the creation of God which He has chosen to teach us of the wisdom of His covenant. God made the trees from water, air, light and green pigment, and it is by water (with minerals from the earth through the roots ), by carbon dioxide from the firmament of the air, by light radiating from the sun and by chlorophyll (the pigment that makes the leaf green) that God causes to combine and make sugar (glucose) which in turn is converted to cellulose and resin (wood). This phenomena of simplicity illustrates the unsearchable complexity of the mystery of the wisdom of God, as the Psalmist was moved to say “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out” (Romans 11 v 33). Sugar is the energy of the tree, cellulose makes the stiff fibres (that we know from splinters we get in our fingers) and resin is the glue that holds these long fibres together. The fibrils (microscopic fibres - less than a millimetre, 0.025 inch) are made of long chains of carbon and oxygen molecules (cellulose) and form long tubular macroscopic fibres (3mm, 0.125 inch) and are analogous to the stiff skeleton bones of our body that give us rigidity - where the resin is like the muscle and fat of our body which give us strength and resistance to disease.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The complex process of conversion begins with water and minerals from the earth traveling upwards from the roots as sap, along the surface of the trunk inside the bark, out to the tips of the shoots, and after conversion to sugar, returns a parallel way down the tree inside the sap layer to be stored in storage cells distributed throughout the inner timber, where it is later converted into both cellulose and resin. The sap wood where all this happens grows every year into a ring of new wood under the bark completing a cycle that continues as the tree grows larger and the trunk gets thicker, until eventually it dies to be replaced by others from its seeds shed over the years in exactly the same way. It is the same process of conversion in all tress from the lowly vine to the majestic firs and oaks. Sap is the life blood of the tree, glucose the energy of the tree, cellulose makes the stiff skeletal bones of the trunk, branches and twigs and resins are the fat and muscle. When the bark is severed the trees bleeds sap from its ‘bloodstream’ and resin from its storage ‘reserves’, but when the whole bark is removed the flow of life and strength is stopped and the tree dies, but when a tree is cut down, the stump has the power to shoot again to a renewed growth. All these illustrate the qualities that God is looking for in His saints as the Psalmist noted, “The trees of the LORD are full of sap; the cedars of Lebanon, which he hath planted” (Psalm 104 v 16), and as Job said, “For there is hope of a tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that the tender branch thereof will not cease” (Job 14 v 7) and the Psalmist rejoiced, “The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon” (Psalm 92 v 12) God made all the trees to grow in the same manner from the lowly vine to the mighty fir and oak and God has used these to show us the diversity and unity of His promise to mankind. He made the vine of humble stature, but despite its uncomely stature He made it to be the most choice of trees through the quality of its fruit, as Isaiah lamented of Israel and foretold of Jesus, of Israel “And he fenced it, and gathered out the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and also made a winepress therein: and he looked that it should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes” (Isaiah 5 v 2), but in contrast he wrote of Jesus, “For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him” (Isaiah 53 v 2). In fulfillment of these prophetic figures Jesus referred to himself, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman” (John 15 v 1). God has used the tree as a token of His covenant from the beginning, He used the tree to symbolise the difference between obedience and disobedience - the gulf between continued life and eternal death - in both the tree of ‘knowledge of good and evil’ (the test of obedience) and the ‘tree of life’ ( the token for life everlasting). He continued the same pattern of illustrating the hope of the promises of His covenant in the olive tree, the apple tree, the fig tree, the palm, the cedar, the acacia, the cypress, and the forest. God has chosen the characters of trees to represent his saints.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The olive tree is the source of the finest of oil, and God has chosen the oil as a symbol for the Holy Spirit in the anointings and cleansing of Israel under His law and for the hope of change to everlasting life, (Psalm 45); (Psalm 133); (Luke 4 v 18); (Exodus 30 v 22 - 33). God has chosen this tree to be a symbol for the perfection of the stature and character of His Son Jesus Christ and the inflammable olive oil to be the symbol for the light of His Holy Spirit (Exodus 27 v 20) which filled the mortal body of Jesus Christ (Matthew 3 v 16 - 17) who like a perfect tree was mortal, as the Psalmist mused upon his savior, “And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper” (Psalm 1 v 3), and again, “But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God: I trust in the mercy of God for ever and ever” (Psalm 52 v 8). Solomon took the apple (or citron) tree to describe the sweet fragrance of the love between Jesus and his companion bride, “As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste” (Song of Solomon 2 v 3). God chose the fig tree as the tree whose fruit is full of incredibly sweet seed as to be the symbol of the word of God, which healing word filled Jesus and was fulfilled in him as illustrated by a miracle of God in king Hezekiah who experienced the healing of the rising boil of his flesh, “For Isaiah had said, Let them take a lump of figs, and lay it for a plaister upon the boil, and he shall recover” (Isaiah 38 v 21). Jesus who came looking for the fruit of the word of God in the Jews of his day, “And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet” (Mark 11 v 13). The palm has been chosen by God to represent those who uphold the word of God as true and upright, able to withstand the onslaughts of the fierce winds and intense heat of the trials of faith brought on by the adversary of God (the enmity). The seventy elders of Israel stood upright as custodians of the the promises of God in a hot and arid desert as the children of Israel were led to the ‘Promised land' in what appeared to be an impossible situation, “And they came to Elim, where were twelve wells of water, and threescore and ten palm trees: and they encamped there by the waters” (Exodus 15 v 27), (Numbers 33 v 9). The Psalmist wrote of the palm and the cedar, “The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon” (Psalm 92 v 12). Solomon depicted them in the ornamentation of the doors of the Temple (1 Kings 6 v 31 - 35). Ezekiel was also inspired to write of the use of palms in the construction of the forthcoming temple to be established in Jerusalem when Jesus returns to establish the kingdom of God on earth (Ezekiel 40 v 16), (Ezekiel 41 v 18). Israel were taught that those permitted to live in the Kingdom of God in the fullness of His promises would live under the upright and true protection of the Son of God as universal king as administer of law of God he perfectly fulfilled, they were to live for 7 days every year in booths made of branches of palm and other trees during the feast of Tabernacles following the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 23 v 33 - 44). Some of the Jews in Jesus' day understood this teaching, for as Jesus traveled toward Jerusalem knowing it was for his crucifixion, they ‘took palm branches, and

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God went forth to meet him, and cried, 'Hosanna, Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord'. (John 12 v 12 - 19). The thorny acacia (Black acacia, Mimosa Nilotica) of which it is said that hardy desert cattle are afraid to approach so fierce are their thorns stands as a symbol of human beings - created originally peaceful and friendly in the image of God - but cursed with the enmity and manifest in a fearsome and piercing reputation of the aggression, but out of which tree the almost imperishable heartwood can be used when all the thorns are removed. This is the shittim wood that was used in the Tabernacle to symbolise the nature of which Jesus Christ was born as a mortal man (son of man, Adam), but who removed all the effects of the thorns of the enmity to become the son of God. In the figure that God used (the black acacia in the wilderness of mankind), Jesus lived as a mortal man shaped and fashioned by God but cut down by man. Thus in the figure he acacia was cut down, the thorns and bark removed, the shaped by the inspiration of God in the hand of Bezaleel, conditioned, sanded, polished and built up into artifacts of usefulness in the house of God after being overlaid with pure gold. God taught His purpose through the shittim wood of the Ark of the Covenant, the altar of incense, the table of shewbread and the boards of the Tabernacle walls. (Exodus 25). The altar of burnt sacrifice was also made of shittim wood, but overlaid with brass (Exodus 27 v 1-7). God chose brass to represent the fire of the Holy Spirit (Revelation 1 v 15), reflecting and blending in with the yellow of the flames and heat of the fire on the altar, which heat (fuelled by the fat of the offerings, Leviticus 3 v 16 - 17) must have been intense, why then did the shittim wood under the brass not burn away? In the beginning when God created everything (i.e. all what we now call 'science') He created the natural phenomena now known as pyrography, if air is sealed away from wood as it is heated it does not burn but changes into a hard and durable resinous substance that we know as bakelite. Thus the altar encased in brass was entirely durable for the length of its useable life as a place of the burning of animal flesh and fat, in the figure teaching us Christians that consumption of the flesh (the enmity) by the Holy Spirit is necessary during every day of ones' life, after the perfect example of Jesus Christ - who alone was the burnt offering and its sweet smelling savour. It is worth remembering that the specification of the whole Tabernacle (from boundary curtain to the Most Holy place) is still used by God to teach us Christians the way unto salvation is possible by one man Jesus Christ. The highly resinous cypress tree - from which Noah made the ark and pitched it within and without to make it watertight - is used to teach of the hope of salvation from the ultimate judgment of God, i.e. death without resurrection due to all mankind (Genesis 6, where gopher is cypress). God has accepted the life blood of Jesus Christ as a covering for sin in order that a man and his family would be saved from His curse of a everlasting grave. Cypress wood is almost indestructible in water and was used extensively in boat building, and the 'pitch' used to make it watertight was the natural resin of the cypress that is harvested by cutting the bark and collecting the 'teardrops' of resin which ooze from those wounds inflicted in its trunk and then converted into a bitumen-like sealant. This 'pitching' is the same Hebrew word as to 'anoint' - as in the anointing used by God to separate the Levitical priests to His service in the tabernacle, a symbolic figure of the 'sealing' of His saints unto eternal life by the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God 'covering' of their sins in the blood of Christ (Exodus 40 v 9 - 15), (Psalm 132). God taught Noah that a multitude of members (the planks) would be sealed as one by the tear-drop like resin of the life blood of Jesus to form a vessel (the ark) of salvation in which a man (Jesus) and his family (the saints) will be saved from the judgment of God to come on all the earth of an eternal grave, to begin a new life cleansed from all wickedness. It is by the shed life of Jesus Christ - a life full of the Holy Spirit - that the saints, the 'forest' of all manner of trees of righteousness will be 'built up' of the many sinners redeemed by the blood of Christ to fulfil the prophecy, “that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified” (Isaiah 61 v 1-3). Peter links the experience of Noah preparing the ark to pass through the flood of the 'waters of death' as the figure of baptism as the preparation for the ultimate sealing by the Holy Spirit by the shed blood of Christ (1 Peter 3 v 18 - 22). The cedar and fir was used in the temple of God designed by king David as a symbol of all the saints who will be built into and stand in the house of God for ever, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever” (Psalms 23). Solomon sang of the unbreakable love between Jesus and his saints and that they will all dwell in the beauty of the house of the Lord for ever (Song of Solomon 1 v 17). Thus trees are creations used by God as tokens of mortal men and women, who like wood are shaped and finished for the house of God, will have their natures changed from mortality to immortality and live as trees of righteousness in the garden of the Lord for ever, as the blind man saw when Jesus healed his infirmity, “And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought. And he looked up, and said, I see men as trees, walking After that he put his hands again upon his eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly” (Mark 8 v 2325) where ‘clearly’ means ‘to the end’ or, for ever. Thus teaching that the process of preparation is slow, the end is indistinct at first but slowly the hope becomes clearer as faith is strengthened till finally the end is a reality. These 'trees' of men and women will be planted in the garden of the Lord on earth for ever according to the promise of the covenant of the Lord, the oath that God has declared and recorded in the Holy Bible, “For the LORD shall comfort Zion: he will comfort all her waste places; and he will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody” (Isaiah 51 v 3), “And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not” (Isaiah 58 v 11), “For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations” (Isaiah 61 v 11) *********************

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 11 The covenant of God is in the word of God - the Holy Bible God created the firmament on the 2nd day of creation (Genesis 1 v 6-8). The firmament is what we now know as the atmosphere, a mantle of air that gave protection to the earth and life-giving elements (oxygen and nitrogen) to all living things that were to be created. At lower altitudes this atmosphere is holds water, evaporated from the seas into clouds (a mist), in order that when the dry land was formed it could be distilled as rain to allow plants to grow and all creatures to continue living. God has used the clouds and rain to illustrate the dissemination of the word of His covenant to teach mankind of His purpose, "Give ear O ye heavens, and I will speak; O earth, the words of my mouth. My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass: Because I will publish the name of the LORD: ascribe ye greatness unto our God." (Deuteronomy 32 v 1-3). If God had not created the phenomena of buoyancy and gravity when He created the firmament then there would be no clouds or rain, but the wisdom of God is far greater than that of man and He caused clouds to float and gravity to hold them above the earth. So greater is the wisdom of God to that of mankind, men and women have been trying ever since to catch up with their understanding of what God did in the beginning and still do not fully comprehend the infinite balance between all elements of nature, but Isaiah was inspired by God to teach us through His creation, "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it to bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it." (Isaiah 55 v 8-11). Every cloud is made up of tiny droplets of water that cling together by another phenomena of creation (electro-magnetic attraction) to form clouds. these droplets are in continuous motion and if the is a lot of agitation an electrical explosion results (lightning and thunder). Each droplet is a miracle in itself in that is has the characteristic of a lense that took mankind some 5.5 thousand years to discover, i.e. the ability to divide white light from the sun into the 7 primary colours of the spectrum. God has used this phenomena to teach of His covenant to mankind that people (as individual droplets of water) will display the beauty of the righteous whitelight of the word of God in their lives in response to which God will embrace them in the full beauty of eternal life as a composite body. To confirm this God set the rainbow in the sky to teach of the covenant He has given to mankind as a reminder to all of us that His covenant is true and alive to this day (Genesis 9 v 12-16).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God

Only one man, Jesus Christ, displayed the full beauty of the word of God in his life and death and God has made him to be as the white-light of the sun in its strength

(Malachi 4 v 1-2) (Psalm 19). By showing all the characteristics of God in his life (love, mercy, grace, long-suffering, goodness and truth - Exodus 34 v 5-8) Jesus became the Light of the word of God (John 8 v 12), the full manifestation of the character, mind and intent of God - a) His Word (John 1 v 1), ( 1 John 1 v 1-3), the Light from God (John 1 v 6-14) and c) the fulfillment of Emmanuel (Isaiah 7 v 1415), (1 Timothy 3 v 16). Thus Jesus Christ manifest the Word of God, the Light of God and the Character of God as one entity in order for him to become the focal point (the sun) of the covenant of God shown in the rainbow so he, John, could realise his hopes of resurrection from an eternal grave. Johns' faith was that God would create a new 'heaven and earth' of righteousness (Isaiah 65 v 17-25) in which Jesus would be the focal point of the light of government, the King (Psalm 2) around whom his companion (the saints) will reflect the full spectrum of his characteristics in 1st, their mortal bodies and 2nd in glorified bodies of eternal life in the mercy of God (Revelation 10 v 1). Throughout the bible God has used the clouds to demonstrate the word of His covenant, power and purpose with mankind (Exodus 13 v 21-22), (Exodus 16 v 10), (Numbers 9), (Mark 9 v 7), (Mark 14 v 62), (Luke 21 v 27), (Acts 1 v 9). It can now be understood from the rain clouds of the creation of God that a ‘cloud’ of righteous witnesses (Hebrews 12 v 1) were inspired by Him to record the events of the revealing of the covenant of God by their words and records of their actions. Each one distilled their inspired knowledge (2 Peter 1 v 21) as glistening gems of droplets of pure distilled water of the word of God, which are recorded in the Holy Bible for us to search out one by one and put together so that they become a well of living water within our minds and hearts, according as it is written “It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter” (Proverbs 25 v 2), and “But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life” (John 4 v 14). ********************* Chapter 12 The curse on the serpent “And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel” (Genesis 3 v 14-15).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God

The curse on the serpent was a sombre curse and should never be interpreted as anything else as it is the root from where all rebellion against the rule of the word of God within our hearts comes from, but contained within that devastating curse of spiritual uncleanness (which was passed to all progeny of Adam) is a ray of the hope of the covenant of God which has now been confirmed. Jesus Christ was the singular seed of the woman who bruised the enmity in the head which signified his victory over temptation and sin in life and death, at which time the enmity (in God's enemies) slew his body, a simultaneous fulfilment culminated as a climax on the cross. The details of this curse on the serpent - revealing the enmity as the poison of the serpent as human nature and being set against the covenant of God - is described in “The lifetime vow of baptism”.

Chapter 13 Clothes of skin Until their sin, Adam and Eve had no shame of their naked bodies, but when God took the power of evil reasoning from the serpent and placed it in their minds to perpetuate their voluntary spiritual uncleanness by disobedience to His word (as was revealed in the curse upon the serpent) there began in Adam and Eve an acute awareness of their uncleanness by self consciousness of their bodies in the form of a feeling and emotion that they had never experienced before, they became ashamed of their bodies - a consequence of the shame of their sin. To confirm that the curse of God on the serpent has been passed to us in the form of the enmity, we are likewise ashamed in our own eyes (and our neigbours) of our bodily parts as a witness to us that we are of sinful nature which is unclean in the eyes of God and directs us to seek out the covenant of God wherein is a covering for our moral and spiritual uncleanness. This was confirmed by God who showed His everlasting covenant to Adam and Eve by killing an animal to provide a covering for their shame, “Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them” (Genesis 3 v 21). This was to teach them (and us) that God would provide a sacrifice - where blood was shed - to give a covering for the shame of sin, and thus make a way possible for the salvation of a people who would be born under the curse of a finite lifespan and who face an eternal grave. As they put on the skins of the slain animal to cover their shame, so we by baptism ‘put on’ Christ, “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3 v 27), and “And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness” (Ephesians 4 v 24). The shame of exposing our own bodies and the shame of seeing our neighbours body are a pointed reminder to us that because by nature we are spiritually unclean and naked in the eyes of God, He has cursed us with a physical shame of our physical

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God body parts, but given us a hope that there He has provided a covering for our spiritual nakedness and shame in Christ Jesus. ********************* Chapter 14 Cherubim and the tree of life It was the will of God that His son would live for ever ruling the earth God had created. Adam (the first son - Luke 3 v 38) and Eve were given dominion over all the earth (Genesis 1 v 28-31) and were niether mortal nor immortal but in a state of perpetual life depending on obedience to a law which God gave them. There was a 'tree of life' in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2 v 9). They were told that if they broke that law they would become mortal (Genesis 2 v 9, 16-17) and return to the dust of which they were made (Genesis 3 v 17-19). Both of them sinned by breaking the commandment and were subsequently cursed to live a limited lifespan beset by temptation and then to die. Despite this, the will of God remained unchanged but the bond that was between God and man (describes as 'very good' Genesis 1 v 31) was now broken. A breach was created so large that mankind could no longer have access to the 'tree of life', a gulf was opened so wide and deep between God and man that Adam and Eve could no longer live in the peaceful conditions of the Garden of Eden. Thus God drove out Adam and Eve; “So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubim’s, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life” (Genesis 3 v 24). Despite the breaking up of the path to the 'tree of life', the covenant of God that in due time God would bless men and women with life without limit stood firm, but now God set stringent conditions for its realisation. Individually the time-limit set by God for mankind is birth to death, because all have to die - there is no other way, but additionally God set an overall time-limit to His purpose in order that there should be a collective population under the rulership of His son who He would raise from the grave to eternal life to inherit the earth created for them. That overall time limit was pre-figured in the record of the 6 time-period creation as being approximately 6000 years with the 7th mellenium as the Kingdom of God on earth, after which there would be no need for time as everything will be immortal (1 Corinthians 15 v 22-28) The Cherubim (angels) with the flaming sword taught mankind that the conditions to realise the promise of His covenant in order to gain access to the tree of life (which symbolised the fulfilment of the promise of the covenant of God - eternal life) it was necessary to pass through the flaming sword of the Cherubim, for there is no other way. The 'flaming sword' is the figure of the word of God (Hebrews 4 v 12-13) inspired and made alive by the Holy Spirit both in its writing, understanding and practicing (2 Timothy 3 v 16-17) (1 Corinthians 2 v 9-16). In simple terms this means that the temptations of the enmity are to be overcome during ones' life (overcoming disobedience to Gods will by enlightened obedience), followed by resurrection to everlasting life after physical death and raising from the grave at the end of the overall time period. There was no way to bypass this boundary.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The breach between God and man was formed (and continues) because of the enmity and was confirmed by God in placing His angel and Holy Spirit between mankind and everlasting life. The enmity is the poison of the reasoning of the serpent that found fertile ground in the hearts of Adam and Eve when they satisfied their temptation and was confirmed and established in them by God as the 'enmity' in His curse upon the serpent (Genesis 3 v 16) and is always an adversary to God and perpetually opposed to His word. The Cherubim with the ‘flaming sword which turned every way’ is a token of the Holy Spirit from God which is provided to kill the enmity and to give life again by resurrection after death, and is administered by the angels at the command of God upon the appeal of Jesus Christ (Luke 15 v 10) (Hebrews 1 v 13-14) (Psalm 34 v 7) (2 Corinthians 1 v 20-22) (John 14 v 15-17 & 26). The angels are the immortal messengers of God who carry out His commands in the nations of the world (Daniel 4 v 17, 25 & 32) and in individuals chosen by God to be prepared for salvation (Psalm 103 v 19-22). The breach between God and man was confirmed and taught in the ordering of the Tabernacle. The inner sanctuary was called the Most Holy place where any who went in died except the High Priest under very strict conditions once a year (Leviticus 16 v 2). The Most Holy place prefigured the immortal state (the Tree of Life) and was behind a veil of linen in which were woven cherubim to guard the way to the Ark of the Covenant in the Most Holy place. When Jesus died this veil was rent in two from top to bottom (Matthew 27 v 51) indicating that the way unto the Tree of Life was now made possible by his victory over the enmity. Isaiah had prophecied that one would come who would manifest the fullness of the name of God in a mortal body who would be the "repairer of the breach" and "the restorer of paths to dwell in" (Isaiah 58 v 7-12). In his life Jesus fulfilled the conditions required in this prophecy and in his death he fulfilled the restoration of the way to the Tree of Life for others to follow him. Jesus also fulfilled the prophecy of the Psalm, “They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head: they that would destroy me, being mine enemies wrongfully, are mighty: then I restored that which I took not away” (Psalm 69 v 4). The Ark of the Covenant in the Most Holy place had a Mercy Seat of gold on top out of which were beaten two cherubim to teach of the collective saints formed out of the perfect character of Christ who will enter the immortal state (and be as the angels, Matthew 22 v 30) after Jesus. For Jesus promised 'Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city”. (Revelation 22 v 14), and "He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God." (Revelation 2 v 7). The enmity is the seed of sin and has germinated in every man and woman since the beginning with the exception of Jesus Christ, who though beset by the same seeds of temptation as every other man or woman he never allowed the seeds of the enmity to germinate into sin. He did this by allowing the 'flaming' sword of the word of God enlivened by the Holy Spirit - to kill every temptation to transgress the word of God as they arose throughout his whole life right up to his death when the enmity in his neighbours took him to the cruel, illegal and public death on the cross. Thus Jesus

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God passed through the flaming sword of the Holy Spirit symbolised by the Cherubim ‘keeping the way to the tree of life’, killing his natural spirit and his physical body. He was then resurrected from the grave by the Holy Spirit and the same day resurrected to everlasting life, making a way possible for others to gain access to the tree of life. Thus, the covenant of God was taught in the driving of mankind out from access to life without limit. Jesus used the words of God (knowledge of the will of God) and the Holy Spirit (obedience by humility of mind) as a sword to slay the enmity within himself, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4 v 12). By this means he made a way possible for others to follow him as Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14 v 6), and as Paul explained, salvation is “By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh” (Hebrews 10 v 20). The veil is the curtain that divides the Sanctuary of the tent of the Tabernacle, where there were two rooms, the Holy Place (signifying the daily ministrations of the life of preparation of the saints) and the Most Holy Place (which signified the state of everlasting life). Between the two was the veil, a curtain with Cherubim interwoven within it, keeping the way to the Ark of the Covenant in the Most Holy Place. ********************* Chapter 15 The offering of Abel Adam, Eve and their sons had become mortal with no possibility for self-redemption. However, the covenant of God stood firm in that there was hope of resurrection from the grave, by faith in a redeemer that God would raise up who would give all his mortal life in service to God. He would do this by keeping every commandment as he killed temptation to disobey from the enmity as it arose within him. As was shown in the coverings of animal skins that God gave Adam and Eve to cover the shame of their nakedness, God made it a condition of His covenant that blood must be shed to provide an atoning cover for sin and subsequently a hope of salvation. In fulfillment of this, the redeemer that God had in mind would also shed his blood in death by giving himself as a willing sacrifice to fulfil the covenant of God (Hebrews 9 v 22). This son would be resurrected from the grave and then to everlasting life to become the firstborn of a new creation of righteous people who also would be raised from the grave and then to eternal life. This is the purpose of God in His covenant (1 Corinthians 15 v 20-23). The hope of salvation in the covenant of God was understood by Abel (the second son of Adam and Eve). He expressed his belief in that hope through a singular act of faith by sacrificing an animal to show that he had willingly entered into the covenant of

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God God (thus declaring that God was righteous) and that he was sinful and needed a redeemer to make a way back to the tree of life and peace with God (Genesis 4 v 4-5). By his faith Abel showed yet more details of the hope this covenant and the conditions that God has set. He demonstrated his belief by choosing an animal that typified the son that God would raise up as a redeemer, it was not an animal of his choice, but a firstborn lamb of the flock. His hope was that he would be a member of the re-born flock whose firstborn elder was his redeemer, it was his hope in a promise of love that the people who are to be saved from an eternal grave are like a flock of sheep under the direction of one shepherd (God) who would be manifest in the firstborn lamb. Abel believed that of this flock of faithful sheep there would be - in later generations - a firstborn lamb who would be raised up and chosen particularly by the Shepherd. That lamb would be separated from the flock by perfect obedience and would give his life for them by sacrifice in submission to the will of the Shepherd, and in the giving of his life, his blood would be inevitably shed to provide a covering for sin. Not only was blood to be shed, but Abel removed the fat of the lamb and offered that particularly on the altar to show his faith that this one (the firstborn lamb of God) would enter into in the covenant of God, would give the whole ‘reserve’ of the life of his body in service to God, his Shepherd. As blood is the fluid ‘reservoir’ of life in a body, so similarly is fat the solid ‘reservoir’ of life, such that when food is denied or severe stress is endured, the blood continues to circulate but the body draws on the fat ‘reserves’ to provide the nourishment of the body and when the fat is exhausted, the body dies. Abel believed that his redeemer would be a firstborn lamb of a new character (the character of God) a firstborn of a new generation which was believed also by John 4000 years later “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1 v 29), and "book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world." (Revelation 13 v 8), (Revelation 5 v 6 & 12). Not only would he be separated from his brethren by denial of all temptation as Paul later confirmed “was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4 v 15) but would give himself without resistance in death to the will of the Shepherd his Father as Isaiah wrote, “He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth” (Isaiah 53 v 7). Furthermore, not only would he shed his blood in death as a covering for sin (as was taught in the law, “For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul”, Leviticus 17 v 11), but that he would devote all the substance of the fatness of his body and life to the will of his Shepherd and Master by his vow to keep the covenant of God - as the faith of Abel was and as confirmed in the law of the offerings, “all the fat is the LORD's” (Leviticus 3 v 16), and “And he shall take away all the fat thereof, as the fat of the lamb is taken away from the sacrifice of the peace offerings; and the priest shall burn them upon the altar, according to the offerings made by fire unto the LORD: and the priest shall make an atonement for his sin that

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God he hath committed, and it shall be forgiven him” (Leviticus 4 v 35). The richness and fullness of the sacrifice was witnessed in the body of Jesus on the cross as foretold by the Psalmist, “I may tell (count) all my bones: they look and stare upon me” (Psalms 22 v 17), and “By reason of the voice of my groaning my bones cleave to my skin” (Psalms 102 v 5). We cannot give such fat goodness to God, but as those baptised into his death, we must follow Jesus in giving the best fatness of our life in service to God. Although the full details of the covenant of God were ratified and enshrined in the teaching and figures in the law, God had already revealed them from the beginning to those who made themselves of the flock of God, who like sheep were humble, contrite, trusting and docile as Isaiah wrote, “For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones” (Isaiah 57 v 15). The terms and conditions of the covenant of God have not changed, the Old Testament (the old covenant), and the New Testament (the new covenant in Christ blood) are one and the same in essence, therefore our faith will be the same as the faith of Abel, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen .. .. By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh .. .. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Hebrews 11 v 1-6). ********************* Chapter 16 Noah and the Ark God has revealed the details of the purpose of His covenant little by little to those who obey Him (Psalm 25 v 14), (Amos 3 v 7). Lamech, the father of Noah was moved to say at his birth, "And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the LORD hath cursed." (Genesis 5 v 29). The word 'comfort' used here is the effect of a complete about-turn of fortunes, i.e. from grief to happiness, from tears to joy, and despair to elation. This 'comfort' is the essence of the covenant of God wherein He promises to reverse the fate of those who love and obey Him by redemption from an eternal grave to eternal life through a redeemer and savior who God would raise up for that work. The words 'work' and 'toil' are the same words as the curse on Eve (sorrow and travail, Genesis 3 v 16) and Adam (toil, sorrow, Genesis 3 v 17-19), the curse that God will reverse into everlasting joy (Revelation 21 v 4). Noah therefore was to be a prefigurment of the saviour all the righteous who are looking for release from the curse of God in which we all are held. It is for us to find out what is taught.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Of all generations of mankind, Jesus alone found grace in the eyes of God as God testified, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3 v 17). As a prefigurement of Jesus (according to the prophetic words of Lamech) Noah alone in his generation ‘found grace in the eyes of God’, as it is written, “But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD” (Genesis 6 v 5-8). Within this grace is embodied the 'comfort' of the hope of the covenant of God. The contempories of Noah were godless, wicked and denied God who created and kept them alive. As a result God purposed to destroy man and all living creatures, but to spare Noah and his family and a representation of all creatures. God told Noah of this immediate purpose with the earth and instructed him to make preparations to be saved in order to teach him of the fullness of the hope of salvation in the greater purpose of God. By faith Noah, upon these instructions of God, saved his own family from death by building an ark as it is written, “By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith” (Hebrews 11 v 7) . When the ark was finished and all creatures were aboard, God shut Noah and his family in the ark and they remained there until they were able to continue their life on a renewed earth after the judgemental flood of God brought upon all the earth was over. Apart from the practical need for Noah to be made safe from the flood, the actions of God were ordered to teach us of the hope of salvation contained in the covenant of God, that a righteous man (Christ Jesus) and his family (friends by birth and adoption) will be saved from an eternal grave as real to us as the flood was to Noah and his contemporaries. The family of ‘friends’ consist of Jew and Gentile and will be taken out of every generation from the beginning to the last days, as Jesus said “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you” (John 15 v 14) and Paul explained, “but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father” (Romans 8 v 15), and Jesus promised, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day” (John 6 v 40). To confirm the details of the promise of the hope of the covenant of God in those who willingly enter into the conditions of that covenant, God told Noah to build an ark and to take within it his family and all creatures that God directed, “Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch” (Genesis 6 v 14). It is for us to search out and understand what Noah understood as he prepared this ark to the saving of his household, because it is our salvation to know what Jesus has done for us, so that we enter a 'spiritual' ark by baptism and remain therein until the earth is renewed by the kingdom of God after the greater judgment of God, because Noah did not just build a lifeboat for an isolated disaster. Jesus said that the days when he returns to the earth save the righteous by resurrection, to enact the judgment of God on the wicked and to renew the earth by restricting the curse of God, will be days like the days of Noah, “For as in the days

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark. And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Matthew 24 v 38-39). There was no interest among his contempories in the work and witnessing of Noah in preparing and building the ark. Despite mockery he demonstrated his belief in the details of the promised hope of the covenant of God that God had graciously shown to him, by planning, constructing and finishing of the ark. The ark was made of gopher wood (cypress) (Genesis 6 v 14-17) a wood used by shipbuilders for millennia and known to naval architects as among the best for building ships. The cypress is an evergreen with characteristic upright stance and was widely distributed in Mesopotamia and the ‘Fertile Crescent’ where Noah was. The dimensions given in Genesis (300:50:10, length, width, height) are ideal practical shipbuilding proportions given by God to Noah in those early days and tell us that that construction laid the foundation for all shipbuilding since, a traditional craft with skeletal frame work of beams, keel, ribs and stiffening struts, overlaid with planking and caulked with pitch. There would be no supply of prepared materials such wood yards and sawmills that we are familiar with, so the first task for Noah was to search the forests for suitable cypress specimens to enable him to meet the pattern that God had set him. The faith of Noah was that he was about to construct a vessel that would save him and his family from drowning in a catastrophic flood that would cover the face of the earth, and that the ark would be a figure of a righteous man (like a tree full of sap) who would be cut down and re-formed to provide salvation from the judgment of God of an eternal grave, for himself and a family of friends. His choice of trees and their preparation would therefore be highly selective as he chose them with his savior in mind. He felled them, sawed them, shaped, jointed and fitted them together as a composite unit to create a vessel that would carry many passengers to safety according to the direction of God who was teaching him and all who follow that God would similarly work with a man who would be His son and who by willing submission would become the savior of mankind. The 'backbone' of a boat is the keel that runs from stem to stern along the bottom of the vessel, the strength of the hull are the skeletal ribs that key into the keel and support the upper superstructure that accommodate life aboard, the planks are the protection against water, flotsam and damage by rocks, and caulking is the sealing of the joints against water leaks. Because of his knowledge of and love for the covenant of God, Noah saw in his work the figure of a man who would save him because of his sins from an eternal grave, he saw Jesus Christ by faith as the backbone of obedience to God, he saw the commandments of the law of God keyed to his obedience to form the skeletal bones of his character, he saw his love for his friends in providing the covering and supporting protection he gave for his family of friends, he saw the planks of the faith of Jesus shielding the stormy waters of the enmity - as he later showed Peter when he walked on the stormy waters signifying the turbulent effects of the enmity, “But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?” (Matthew 14 v 25-31). Above all, Noah perceived what Abel had seen, that blood must be shed for salvation to be possible, not any blood, but the life of the mortal righteous son of God, he saw it in the pitch that he sealed the ark with, the resin bled from the upright wounded fir tree, prepared by the fire of the Holy Spirit and reduced down to a life God accepted as a covering for the sins of others. Many timbers give off a smell when cut as the resin bleeds from the wounds, some are not pleasant and some are intensely sweet. The cypress has an aromatic smell making an exceedingly attractive disinfecting perfume such that ‘pine’ is the most used perfume in present day cleaning materials, and Noah saw that his savior (Jesus) in the cutting and shaping of his character according to the will of God gave off a most pleasing savour of cleanliness to God (like a disinfectant against the enmity) as the resinous fatness of his life was libated. In a parallel figure, the savour of the sacrificial animal without blemish was given off by burning, signifying the his conquest over the flesh, “And the priest shall burn them upon the altar: it is the food of the offering made by fire for a sweet savour: all the fat is the LORD's” (Leviticus 3 v 16). Cypress is a wood with a high resin content making it resistant to rot, disease and insect attack, and this was in the mind of Noah when he selected these trees as he knew that as decay, disease and insects weaken and destroy wood when in the service of man, so likewise does the effect of the enmity within us degrade our morals and decay our character, but Noah knew that to provide a way of salvation his redeemer would resist these adversaries with the strength and fatness of his faith to provide a way of escape from an eternal grave for him and us. God instructed Noah in all these natural wonders of His creation so that he could be enlightened and encouraged to hold fast his faith by the comprehensive harmony between the wisdom of creation and the hope of the promises of the covenant of God, and in this way God particularly told Noah to pitch the ark “within and without” after he had made the entire vessel. Whilst this may seem a natural and obvious thing to do and that would have been done by any shipwright, this specific instruction from God was not just an obvious detail of safety to Noah, it was a token of the pith and core of his faith, for contained in this work of ‘covering’ the timbers of the ark with pitch is the very essence of the hope of the promises of the covenant of God. Pitch is what is now known as 'Naval Stores' and includes several resins extracted from the cypress tree and other pine trees used specifically for the preservation of wood in the form of turpentine, creosote, pine oil, pine tar, pitch and rosin oil. To harvest these natural resins from the cypress, Noah (like all generations since) made incisions in the bark of the trunk of a living tree of no more than one third of the way round the trunk and at an inclined angle to the ground. The cut is no deeper than the inner bark of the tree and cuts through the sap channels to expose the resin stores in the inner wood with the effect that the tree ‘bleeds’, both sap as the lifeblood and

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God resin as the strength, and both are collected in containers and heated in a vessel. After extraction of turpentine, the residue is rosin which is further heated and condenses into black pitch. It is a simple method and dates back to the days of Noah and was created in the wisdom of God to illustrate the fatness, strength and submission of the life of Jesus Christ. As Noah saw the example of his redeemer in his selective choice of tree and saw the subsequent reshaping that was necessary, so Noah realised that for this redeemer to pay the price of his own redemption from an everlasting grave, this redeemer would have to be wounded and bleed, and of this secretion not only would it be blood from his physical wounds as the sap of his life, but it would also be the strong resin of the fatness and richness of his character that would be libated throughout his whole life before he was cruelly cut down and so it was later written of Jesus Christ, “But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53 v 5), and the Zechariah wrote, “And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends” (Zechariah 13 v 6) and again of a reformed Israel, “and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn” (Zechariah 12 v 10) and as the Psalmist wrote, “For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet” (Psalms 22 v 16). Of this pitch made from the teardrops of the life from the wounds in the tree, Noah sealed the whole of the ark and made it waterproof. To complete the marvel of the wisdom of God in the creation of the tree, the hope of the promises of the covenant of God and the inspiration of the writers of the bible, the Hebrew word that was chosen for ‘pitch’ is the same word also rendered as ‘atonement’ meaning to ‘cover over entirely’. The word is used frequently in the law of the God for the covering of sins by the blood of the sacrifice, most particularly on the Day of Atonement when the blood of the sin offering was taken within the Most Holy Place (once a year) by the high Priest as an expiation of the sins of the High Priest and his family and of the whole congregation (Leviticus 16). The need for the covering of his sins by the blood of his savior was understood by Noah and so he prepared the pitch diligently and pitched the ark within and without and so by faith in the promises of the covenant of God saved both himself and his family. The power of the significance of this event is used by Peter for our benefit to help us to have the same faith as Noah by likening our baptism by faith as entrance into an ark of safety where the atoning blood of Christ covers our sins as a continuous application in the faithful renewal of our vow each week in the eating and drinking of the bread and wine of the sacraments, as Peter wrote “when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (I Peter 3 v 20-21).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The simplicity and harmony of the creation of God, the hope of the promises of the covenant of God and the vow of our baptism leave us without excuse if we neglect to keep the spirit of the promises and conditions of the covenant of God embodied in the name of God by our obedience to Jesus as he said, “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him” (John 14 v 23) and, “This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you” (John 15 v 12) and as Moses was told the name of God,“The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty” (or as Tyndale originally translated this phrase, “no man is innocent before Thee” - no person is without guilt of sin, therefore all need the same mercy of the covering of the blood of Christ), visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation” (Exodus 34 v 6-7). The compassion and grace hidden in the name of God (merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin) and embodied in the covenant of God was confirmed in the safe release of Noah, his family and all creatures from the ark when the land had dried and they began to inhabit and populate a renewed earth after the judgments of God had passed. Thus they became a figure of the establishment of kingdom of God on earth by Jesus and his family of friends, after his return to the earth when the judgment of God will not be by water, nor will the creatures be destroyed, but only those who refuse to obey the word of God (II Peter 3). This was the faith of Noah and his release from the ark was not just one of jubilant release but a profound appreciation that without the sacrifice of a redeemer with the shedding of his blood, there would be no savior, and who though a mortal man subject to the uncleanness of the effects of the enmity - would never allow uncleanness to tarnish his character by continually choosing the good and refusing the bad. In confirmation of his faith Noah showed his belief by offering (by fire upon an altar) mortal animals and birds whom God had classified as clean to teach mankind the difference between right and wrong, good and evil, clean and unclean, according to what was later written of Jesus, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good. For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings” (Isaiah 7 v 14-16). Upon this expression of his faith the sacrifice of Noah was accepted by God and God confirmed the eternity of His covenant with the promise that the earth would never be flooded again and the His creation would endure for ever, “And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done. While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease” (Genesis 8 v 21-22). The seasons of the year caused by the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God rotation of the earth around the sun and the tilt of the earth in that circuit are a continual reminder to all mankind that the covenant of God is true and everlasting, and that baptism into Christ (and weekly renewal of that vow) is the only way to hope for the 'comfort' of the covenant of God by resurrection from death to life. ********************* Chapter 17 The covenant through Abraham God had shown Noah that by His grace resting upon one man, a family would be saved from an eternal grave who would begin a new life on a renewed earth. This covenant was the faith of Abraham, and God now revealed more details; 1) The 'renewed' earth would be an everlasting 'inheritance' on earth 2) That the promised son would be made an immortal King/High Priest, an Advocate to plead to God for clemency, 3) That his seed (the 'son') would attain to this honour by killing the enmity within himself (i.e. he would be mortal man of the sons of Adam, who dies, is raised from the grave and made immortal), 4) That in his seed (the 'son') a multitudinous 'seed' would include people from all nations. 1) The promised inheritance on earth will be everlasting Abraham was told "Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee." (Genesis 13 v 14-18), (Genesis 15 v 7). Despite having no child Abraham believed that this inheritance would be 'for ever' on earth, and as he was mortal he believed that there must be a resurrection. God had taught Abraham that a journey of faith was necessary to prove his belief in the covenant as faith (Hebrews 11 v 1) by demonstrating it in works (James 2 v 1426) which would require implicit trust in God (Hebrews 11 v 6). For Abraham this was both a physical and spiritual journey (by spiritual it is meant the formation of a new character closer to that of God in place of the natural character close to that of the enmity). For all believers since, that journey has always been spiritual (with a few exceptions who did also have to physically 'migrate'). In all cases however, absolute trust in God is required even when the outlook appears hopeless due to circumstances beyond their control.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God God had told Abraham to leave the familiar place of his birth, the land of his fathers where his livelihood was, and journey into the 'unknown' to a land a long distance away, a journey of faith. "Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. So Abram departed, as the LORD had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran." (Genesis 12 v 1-4). Paul later wrote of Abraham, "By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went." (Hebrews 11 v 8). By obedience, Abraham became the first 'Hebrew', a name that means 'to pass or cross over'. In a practical biblical usage it is used to describe those who 'cross or pass over' the river Jordon, but in its fullest and intended meaning it means to 'pass or cross over' from servitude to the enmity to servitude to God. For us, that journey begins at baptism and continues toward the "promised land" of the kingdom of God until our life expires in anticipation of resurrection, at which time a character change must have occurred. Without this change, there can be no hope of inclusion in the covenant of God, as Jesus taught (Matthew 25 v 1-12), (Luke 13 v 25), (Matthew 23 v 21-22). Jesus likened the journey to ploughing a field (Luke 9 v 62), Solomon said it was a path of enlightenment (Proverbs 4 v 18), and the apostles said that all who are traversing this path seek a 'city' of righteousness (Hebrews 11 v 10-16), (Revelation 21). Abraham (and us after him) was to be shown how the forerunner of that journey along the path of life (John 14 v 6) would gain victory over the enmity and salvation for others. 2) An immortal King/High Priest, an Advocate Abraham knew that he needed a redeemer to 'rescue' him from his captivity to sin in order for him to receive eternal life on earth, and that that redeemer would be a man of the human race, a son of God who God would provide. He knew he needed this 'greater son' to plead to God on his behalf for clemency. Lot parted from Abraham to live in the degenerate city of Sodom (a figure of an unchecked enmity at work) (Genesis 13). In course of time enemies came from the land he had left behind and took Lot and his family captive back to where they originally came from (Genesis 14). Abraham pursued these captors, released his family and brought them back to the land of the 'promise'. An angel of God met Abraham on his return and revealed to him how in similar manner as he had rescued Lot, a 'greater son' would redeem indeed him and his friends from their captivity to the enmity by vanquishing the enemy of God - the enmity (Ephesians 4 v 4-10). By this act this greater son would become an everlasting King/High Priest, the King of Salem - peace (Isaiah 9 v 6-7), the High Priest (Hebrews 2 v 16-18) (Hebrews 4 v 1415), the mediator between man and God (1 Timothy 2 v 5) and Advocate (1 John 2 v

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God 1-2). Paul later explained this promise in full, (Hebrews 5, 6 & 7), and the Psalmist wrote prophetically (Psalm 110). Not only was Abraham assured by these promises of the covenant, but we also gain conviction that the Jesus Christ we remember each first day is the same greater son that Abraham looked for. To underscore the promise of the covenant that a savior would come, Melchizedec - the angel - confirmed it with bread and wine, "And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God." (Genesis 14 v 18-20), by these symbols he taught Abraham that the promised redeemer, the greater son would be represented by two commodities, bread for the corn of the word of God and wine from the vine of God's choice. The bread symbolises the body of Jesus and the wine his blood shed on the cross. Abraham understood this but the children of Israel did not, so God confirmed it in his law given to Moses where every sacrifice (without exception) had to be accompanied with bread and wine to link the sacrifice of body and blood with the bread and wine. This unbreakable thread of the covenant of God comes down to us by the words of Jesus, (Mark 14 v 22-25) in the sacraments we partake of each first day. (see chapter 8 ‘The body and blood of Jesus ChristThe body and blood of Jesus Christ’ in ‘The lifetime vow of baptism’). The promise of the covenant of God was that this greater son would be born of Abraham's lineage (his seed) who would become the savior of all believers. To prefigure this greater son-redeemer, Abraham was told that he would have a son even though way beyond the age of raising children, teaching him that the conception of the greater son would be a miracle of God. Abraham showed his faith in the promises of God in shedding the blood of clean animals and birds (representing the greater son) in obedience to the command of God, to which God replied with a demonstration that told him that the outworking of those sacrifices would be by the action of the Holy Spirit (Genesis 15) (Matthew 1 v 20) (Luke 1 v 34-35) (Mark 1 v 8-10) (Matthew 3 v 16-17) (John 1 v 32-34). 3) Jesus killed the enmity within himself In due course Abraham and Sarah had a son and called him Isaac (Genesis 21 v 1-5). In continuance of the revealing of His promise of a redeemer who would save his multitudinous companion from an eternal grave, God told Abraham how this greater son would become an acceptable savior in the eyes of God. Abraham knew that this son (if born of his lineage) would be mortal and therefore susceptible to the temptations of the enmity as he and all others are. But Abraham knew that the greater son (to become a redeemer) would have to have no sin. Abraham was told that this future greater son of his seed would "possess the gate of his enemies". (Genesis 22 v 17-18) (Galatians 3 v 16). The 'enemy' is the enmity spoken of in the curse on the serpent "I will put enmity between thy seed and her seed" - the seed of human nature, satan, the devil, the flesh, the world etc., always opposed to God, (Genesis 3 v 15) (James 4 v 4) (Romans 8 v 7), (Ephesians 2 v 15-16) & (The enmity) . The 'gate' refers to the entrance of a walled city where the city council, judges and trading were

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God concentrated, it is the nerve centre of the community. To 'possess' is to take possession by force, to conquer, to drive out entirely and replace. This was how the promised redeemer would gain the honour of saving the family of God from the captivity of an eternal grave, by his personal victory over the 'flesh', destroying the enmity within himself (Hebrews 4 v 15), (Hebrews 2 v 18) (James 1 v 13-14). Abraham loved his son Isaac both as the child of his old age and as son of the promises. By the command of God to sacrifice Isaac (the son of promise) (Genesis 22 v 1-2) Abraham was shown that the greater son (Jesus) would be ‘beloved’ of his father (God) as Isaac was of Abraham (Genesis 22 v 2) and that that beloved greater son (Jesus) would trust his Father (God) without question as Isaac trusted Abraham (Genesis 22 v 7-9), and that the redeemer (Jesus) would shed his blood as he was slain in sacrifice as Isaac was prepared to shed his but was not allowed to (Genesis 22 v 1013). In the dual act of faith, Abraham and Isaac showed that both of them believed in resurrection from the dead (Hebrews 11 v 17-19). Abraham understood (and we are taught) that the son of God was yet as then future in that Abraham 'saw' him by faith as Jesus later revealed, "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am." (John 8 v 56-58). It is important here to pause and consider the implication of Jesus words 'I am' in order to fully comprehend the faith of Abraham who is a "father" figure in faith in the covenant of God. I AM is the name and memorial of God and this is the phrase Jesus used in identifying himself, revealing the covenant of God given to Abraham that God will be manifest in a mortal man (Isaiah 7 v 14), and (see chapter 27 ‘The burning bush - the covenant within the name of God’). 4) That his 'seed' would include people from all nations. Because of Abraham's unswerving belief in the covenant of God while living among a paganistic society, God promised him that the promised ‘family’ saved through Noah's faith would not be a natural family of blood relatives from two generations (father and sons as was literally in Noah’s family) but would be a ‘family’ of many nations (Genesis 17 v 1-8) throughout many generations, who would be united together by the blood of the 'firstborn' greater son of that family who would become the head of the family, a family of God embraced in His covenant. Abraham was promised that the seed (singular) who would overcome and kill the enmity would provide a 'blessing' for many people of many nationalities. God told him "And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth would be blessed" (Genesis 22 v 15-18). Abraham's hope and determination was to be a member of that family and he had entered into a covenant relationship with God by shedding of blood in circumcision (Genesis 17), (circumcision), i.e. that he would enter into and reciprocate God's covenant of resurrection from the grave, judgment and change to eternal life, by implicit belief, unquestioning obedience and demonstratable faith even when all seemed hopeless (Luke 10 v 27). In this faith Abraham has become a

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God 'father' figure to all who follow, and we do well to follow his faith and example, as Paul wrote (Romans 4 v 16-25).

********************* Chapter 18 The beloved son of whom the ‘nation’ will come Abraham had lived in the sophisticated city of Ur of the Chaldeas in Mesopotamia where the worship of a multitude of gods was endemic, but among these pagan worshippers Abraham remained true to the covenant of God and to the faith of Noah and although living among pagans he remained separate in his faith in One God, the Creator and Sustainer of the heaven and earth and a Father of such compassion that He promised life everlasting on this earth to those who obeyed Him. After the confounding of the languages at Babel because of the rampant paganistic appetite of mankind after the flood (Genesis 11 v 1-9), God purposed to create and choose one 'particular' nation amongst all nations to be the focus of His eye, upon whom He would bestow the gracious favour of his covenant in order to become the central core of His mercy and the soul of a 'greater' nation made up out of a family of many nations. The 'particular' nation would be the offspring of a 'lesser' son (to be conceived by the miracle of God) and who would be a special people, and the 'greater' nation would be born out of a 'greater' son, of which the 'lesser' son and the 'particular' nation would be prefigurements of the 'greater'. The 'lesser' son was Isaac and the 'particular' people would later be the Children of Israel as Moses said, “For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God: the LORD thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth” (Deuteronomy 7 v 6). The 'greater' son was Jesus and the 'greater' nation is the saints (Revelation 7 v 9). This was the faith of Abraham and Isaac. The 'particular' nation came through Isaac who was conceived by a miracle of God through the power of the Holy Spirit as God said to Abraham of Sarah his barren wife, “And I will bless her, and give thee a son also of her: yea, I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of people shall be of her. Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear? And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him. But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year” (Genesis 17 v 17-21). God taught Abraham that in the 'greater' fulfillment of the promises of His covenant through Isaac, God would raise up a 'greater' son for Himself (also through the power of the Holy Spirit), who would be beloved by God (his Father) and of whom the family of many nations would come to make up one 'greater' nation. The promise of this 'greater' son was fulfilled in the words of the angel to Mary, “And the angel

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God” (Luke 1 v 35) and to Joseph her espoused husband was told, “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1 v 21). This son was indeed son of man (through Mary - Luke 3 v 22-38) and became the 'greater' son, the son of God through devotion to his Fathers will by victory over the enmity. Abraham believed that this 'greater' son would be the firstborn of the 'greater' nation and would therefore be the ‘head’ of that nation and savior of the people taken out of all nations as a ‘family’ as Jesus confirmed, “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am” (John 8 v 56-58), and Paul wrote of the pleasure of God in His covenant, “Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the pre-eminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell” (Colossians 1 v 13-19). God showed Abraham that the outworking of His purpose in the creation of this 'greater' nation was not by the will of man but by the power of God through faithful believers, as Paul wrote, “Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised. Therefore sprang there even of one, and him as good as dead, so many as the stars of the sky in multitude, and as the sand which is by the sea shore innumerable” (Hebrews 11 v 11-12), and John wrote of the family to be ‘born again’ through Jesus, “Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1 v 13). Abraham believed that God would raise up a 'particular' nation through Isaac his own son of promise, but more important to him was the raising up of the 'greater' nation through the 'greater' son who would also come of his progeny, because the he knew that whereas the 'particular' nation was mortal, the 'greater' will become immortal being dependent entirely on the faith and mercy of God in fulfilling His promises, and of that nation he had the desire to belong. Isaiah wrote of this 'greater' son and 'greater' nation, "Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a man child. Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children. Shall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? saith the LORD: shall I cause to bring forth, and shut the womb? saith thy God." (Isaiah 66 v 7-9). This is the 'greater' nation of the faith of Abraham, a nation of faithful people (circumcised in heart - (circumcision), Jeremiah 4 v 4, Romans 2 v 25-29), raised out of Jew and Gentile over 6000 years entirely because of the life and death of one man, Jesus Christ, the son of God and son of man, the 'man child' referred to above. The birth of Jesus as a mortal man was 2030 years before the birth by resurrection from the grave of the 'nation born at once'. Jesus was raised to be the firstborn to eternal life 33 years after he was born, about 2000 years before the change of nature that the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God saints will experience after resurrection and judgment to be consolidated as a birth of the 'greater' nation. (Ezekiel 37) (1 Corinthians 15 v 22-27, 50-57) (Matthew 25 v 3146). This was the hope of the promise of the covenant of God which was given to Israel (the 'particular' nation), they were the possessors of this heritage but through rejection of His ruling influence up to and after the death of Jesus Christ the hope has been given to non-Israelites, i.e. Gentiles. The fulness of the covenant of God relates to a spiritual nation, not a physical nation as we know it now. By spiritual it is meant a group of people of any background united together by a common reverence for God who actively change their characters from service to mammon (the enmity) to service of God. Isaac was beloved of Abraham yet he was prepared to give him to God in sacrifice, so Abraham was led by God to believe that God would give His beloved son for the salvation of His family. Jesus was beloved of God as it is recorded, “And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3 v 17). John wrote of the love of God for Jesus, “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (I John 4 v 10). Paul wrote of the love of the beloved son, “Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father” (Galatians 1 v 4). Jesus is the firstborn of the new creation, the new 'greater' nation of immortal beings all of whom died, were resurrected and then made immortal. "For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words." I Thessalonians 4 v 14-17., where the 'clouds' refer to the glory of God (Exodus 24 v 16), and the 'air' is the Holy Spirit, immortality. In due time Isaac was born in Abraham's old age, and from him came the Children of Israel, later known as the Jews some of whom constitute the nation of Israel. Whilst they will always be God's people (only because of the faithfulness of God to His promises to Abraham) they are astray from God and will remain astray until Jesus returns to the earth according to the promises of God (the return of Jesus). Meanwhile the 'greater' nation is still being formed from Jew and Gentile.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 19 Salvation by the faith of the beloved son Abraham believed in the resurrection of the dead, a resurrection not only from the grave but also from mortality to immortality. He believed that the curse of God was just and that he was subject to it (Genesis 3 v 17-19). He believed that the covenant of God was immutable (that it could never be broken) and he believed that his saviour would be mortal (under the curse of God) but would be resurrected from death by God to everlasting life as Paul later explained, “Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us” (Hebrews 6 v 17-18). God chose to test the strength of Abraham’s faith in the resurrection of the dead and the promises he had been given of an eternal inheritance on the earth (Genesis 13 v 14-17). Abraham, who ‘against hope believed in hope’ that a son would be born to him when it was beyond his own human endeavour but believed God nonetheless (Romans 4 v 16-25). After his son was born and had grown into a youth Abraham was told by God to offer him as a sacrifice as it is written, “And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of" (Genesis 22 v 2). Without a resurrection of the dead, the death of Isaac would have ended Abraham’s hope in the promises of God of an eternal inheritance on earth, but not only did he obey in faith that God would raise Isaac from the dead, but Isaac himself knew what was about to happen and trusted his father and, like a sheep going to the slaughter, did not object but went in submission to his father, thus sharing the same faith in God’s promises (Genesis 22 v 1-24). In his mind Abraham had slain his beloved son as the angel of God prevented him from physically doing so and provided a ram instead for the sacrifice as Paul later wrote, “By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called. Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure” (Hebrews 11 v 17-19) By this test of his faith Abraham understood that the ‘head’ of the family of the promises of God, the saviour of all the members of that family, would be a male of the ‘flock’ of believing mankind, beloved of his father, who like all other men would be caught up in the tangled thicket of human nature by birth, but would follow his father's instruction without question, and would be released from that web of thorny entanglement by obedience to his Father to shed his blood in sacrifice for the salvation of the rest of the flock. Abraham believed that one was Jesus Christ, a mortal man who would be subject to all the temptations that we are, that his father would be God, who would give His son as a covering for sins as John wrote, “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (I John 4 v 10).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Following this test of his faith, Abraham was given more detail of the covenant of God, “That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies. And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice” (Genesis 22 v 17-18). This promise confirmed that the covenant of God would be seen in a ‘family’ that would be made out of all nations, that they would become everlasting like the stars and that they would be separated from the turbulent sea of the enmity at work in man and be in number as the sand on the sea shore, but that the cornerstone of the family would provide the key to the building of the ‘family-house’ by ‘possessing the gate of his enemies’. The gate of the city in bible days was the place of counsel and judgement where the rulers and elders of the city met. The enemy of God is the enmity, and the ‘city’ it creates is the devil, Satan, human nature where the ‘world’ of our imagination rules and judges in all the affairs of our life. To ‘possess’ the gate of this rulership would require a victory over the entire city of human nature, the ‘prince of this world’ (John 12 v 31) which is inherent in each one of us as it was in Abraham. God told Abraham that one of his seed (Jesus) would get this victory over the enmity within his own nature and establish the rule of the law of God in counsel and judgement in place of the usurping rulership of the enmity, and so made a way possible for his family of friends to become co-citizens by faith with him. Jesus described his work to bring the covenant of God to fulfilment, “But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you. When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils. He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth” (Luke 11 v 20-23). Paul wrote of this seed, “Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ” (Galatians 3 v 16). The covenant of God, contained in the promises, is that by one man (Jesus Christ) a house of many nations will be adopted into and built up with members taken from one particular nation into a ‘family’, where the members from the particular nation will form the foundation and central core of the ‘family household’, as Paul wrote, “And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone” (Ephesians 2 v 20). This family, this house, is not a nation of mortal men, women and children, but a spiritual house to be built up of immortal beings after resurrection from the grave, but who will have been prepared for this house during their mortal lives. The ones taken from the ‘particular’ nation are those who are directly descended by blood-line from Abraham through Isaac. Direct descent from Abraham will not qualify for membership of this family of God as John said of the Jews, "And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham." (Matthew 3 v 9). Paul (a Jew) also wrote of his compatriots, "For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh: Who are Israelites; to

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises; Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children" (Romans 9) refering here to the two Israel's, "all Israel" is the spiritual Israel of all nations (by both birth and adoption) and "of Israel" the blood-born Israel. The children of the promise are those who voluntarily enter into covenant relationship with God to repay the love God has shown to them by obediance to His word. For us that is the vow (covenant) of baptism into the death of Christ and a living the rest of our life in changing our natural character to be like Jesus who showed the character of God in his life, aa Peter wrote, “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ” (I Peter 2 v 5) , and Paul wrote, “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God” (Romans 2 v 28-29).

********************* Chapter 20 The ‘family’ separated in character God purposed that the ‘family’ which He would bless with everlasting life would (in their mortality) be a 'separate' and 'special' people. The standards of 'separate' and 'special' were set by God who made 'separation' to be from the effects of rulership of the enmity in the heart and mind, and 'special' to be those who allowed His Holy Spirit through His word to rule their hearts and minds and therefore their lives. God set these two responses to His covenant as the cornerstone of the condition for receiving the benefits of His covenant. To show that condition, God purposed to set apart a 'particular' nation who He would physically separate from the pagan world. God set the pattern of separation by telling Abraham to leave his family homeland and journey to a distant land he had never been to, and promised him that even though he was as then childless, he would become a father of a particular nation which would be chosen by God as 'special' treasure to perpetuate the faithfulness of God to His covenant to Abraham, “Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed” (Genesis 12 v 1-3). Of that family of people (the Children of Israel) God said, “The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: But because the LORD loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers,

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God hath the LORD brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations” (Deuteronomy 7 v 7-9). Abraham obeyed God and became the first Hebrew and progenitor of a nation of Hebrews (Genesis 14 v 13) a name that has been preserved to the language of the current nation of Israel but teaches of the far more than natural descent by birth, for it teaches of the fullness of the hope of the covenant of God of a ‘family of many nations’ who all become 'Hebrews' in character. The name ‘Hebrew’ means ‘to cross over’, as Abraham was the first Hebrew who literally crossed over from a public pagan society under the governorship of the enmity to a private family solely under the rule of God and thus separated himself and his immediate family to God. By this means Abraham became the ‘father’ of all who by faith separate their characters from rulership of the enmity within them to a life under the government of God, under the rule of the law of God to become spiritual children of Abraham by faith, as Paul wrote of the promises of the covenant of God when writing to the Gentiles, “to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all” (Romans 4 v 16) and again to Gentiles who embraced the covenant of God by baptism, “And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise” (Galatians 3 v 29). Abraham’s physical separation was the confirmation of his spiritual separation while he was still living among rank pagans in Ur, in the same way that circumcision was the token of his righteousness that he had already displayed (Romans 4 v 11), and as circumcision is of no value since the fulfillment of the life of Christ, so physical separation from present day society serves no benefits to a Hebrew by faith - as Jesus prayed to God, “I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil” (John 17 v 15), and Paul wrote, “I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat” (I Corinthians 5 v 9-11) and again, “And they that use this world, as not abusing it: for the fashion of this world passeth away” (I Corinthians 7 v 31). This ensures that the way to keep the conditions of the covenant of God are the same in principle for us as they were to Abraham, for it is the same separation from the effects of the enmity within our heart, the same separation of thoughts and imaginations of our mind and the same separation of character from works of evil that is required. Separation is not only abstention from the ungodly ways of unbelievers but denial of the natural work of the enmity within each one of us, so that natural born Jews become spiritual Jews in the same way that natural born Gentiles become spiritual Jews (where Jesus was the perfect and only true Jew, a name derived from

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Judah meaning to ‘praise God’) as Paul wrote, “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God” (Romans 2 v 28-29), and again, “For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called, that is, they which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed” (Romans 9 v 6-8). 'Separate' and 'special' people are those who are 'religious' from God's viewpoint (not man's) and can be identified by Paul's words "If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world." (James 1 v 26-27). 'To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction' is to display the character of God as perfected by Jesus (Jesus said, "He who hath seen me hath seen the Father"- John 14 v 9, and the character of God - Exodus 34 v 6-7), and 'to keep himself unspotted from the world' is denial of the effects of the enmity which can only be achieved by allowing the Holy Spirit to work every day by keeping the commands of Christ as Jesus passed on the covenant of God of the new Testament to us, "If ye love me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." (John 13 v 14 - 27). If the Holy Spirit is to 'abide with us for ever' and we are mortal (i.e. we will die) then there is a resurrection in exactly the same faith as Abraham. After resurrection the Holy Spirit will be given in eternal (for ever) life (I Corinthians 15 v 51-57). Initially the Holy Spirit is given in small measure at baptism "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:" (Matthew 28 v 19) and is increased by God gradually as Jesus (the High Priest) assesses our progress in its effectiveness (The Holy Spirit). Baptism is a new birth by the Holy Spirit ("Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." John 3 v 3-8). After baptism there must be a growth in the new 'spirit' person, "As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:" (I Peter 2 v 2-10). The 'growth' means a continual reduction in the influence of the enmity within us and a similar increase in the influence of the Holy Spirit, "For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:" (Romans 8 v 4-17).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The effect of the Holy Spirit is humiliation of self in ones own eyes before God as an utterly dependant child on it's father "And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father" (Galatians 4 v 6), (Psalm 34 v 18), (Psalm 51 v 17), and shame of secret and open sins (Psalm 51 v 3-4, Psalm 19 v 12, Psalm 90 v 8) in full faith that He knows everything (Hebrews 4 v 13). "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?" (I Corinthians 3 v 16-23). Be warned, it is possible to have all knowledge but no Holy Spirit as was taught in the parable of the 5 foolish virgins (Matthew 25 v 110), ********************* Chapter 21 ‘Promised Land’ of the covenant of God The promise of God in His covenant is an eternal inheritance on earth free from the curse God placed on the ground because of the sin of man (Genesis 3 v 17-19). In prefigurement of this eternal inheritance God told Abraham to go ‘unto a land that I will show you’ as it is recorded, “Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee” (Genesis 12 v 1). The prefigurment of the greater eternal inheritance on the whole earth was the land then known as the land of Caanan, a verdant and beautiful land. God said of this land that it was, “A land which the LORD thy God careth for: the eyes of the LORD thy God are always upon it, from the beginning of the year even unto the end of the year” (Deuteronomy 11 v 12) and again after Abraham's people were to enter the land, “The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me” (Leviticus 25 v 23). This land Abraham was told would be his and his seed for ever, thus promising a resurrection from the dead, “And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee” (Genesis 13 v 15-17). The land of Caanan was described by God, “But the land, whither ye go to possess it, is a land of hills and valleys, and drinketh water of the rain of heaven: A land which the LORD thy God careth for: the eyes of the LORD thy God are always upon it, from the beginning of the year even unto the end of the year” (Deuteronomy 11 v 11-12). It was a land that was verdant and fertile and was described as a land ‘flowing with milk and honey’ speaking of green pastures for sheep, goats and cows and an abundance of flowers and blossom for honey bees. It was a miniature figure and antitype of the kingdom of God that will fill the whole earth (Isaiah 35), a garden of the Lord after the pattern of the Garden of Eden. After the death of Abraham, the natural inhabitants of Canaan (among whom Abraham sojourned) descended into paganism as the influence of Sodom and

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Gomorrah spread and so the land that God cared for was seriously defiled (Leviticus 18 & 20). God drove out those people with the expanded family of Abraham, the children of Israel who were instructed by God, “When the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and hath cast out many nations before thee, the Hittites, and the Girgashites, and the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than thou” (Deuteronomy 7 v 1). Israel could not have done this by their own power and expertise, they were a nomadic group of men women and children with no fixed base, it was God who drove out the inhabitants using Israel as the instrument as He told them, “Understand therefore this day, that the LORD thy God is he which goeth over before thee; as a consuming fire he shall destroy them, and he shall bring them down before thy face: so shalt thou drive them out, and destroy them quickly, as the LORD hath said unto thee. Speak not thou in thine heart, after that the LORD thy God hath cast them out from before thee, saying, For my righteousness the LORD hath brought me in to possess this land: but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD doth drive them out from before thee. Not for thy righteousness, or for the uprightness of thine heart, dost thou go to possess their land: but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee, and that he may perform the word which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” (Deuteronomy 9 v 3-5). This is the ‘promised land’ that Abraham sojourned in and is promised to him and his seed for ever when the kingdom of God is established (Genesis 15 v 15-21; Isaiah 11; Ezekiel 48). It will be a land where the law of God will rule, where the seed of Abraham by promise will live as an example of how a community should live under the law of God (Isaiah 60). Jerusalem will be the seat of governance not only of the promised land, but over all the earth with Jesus as King (Isaiah 9 v 6-7; Psalm 2; Micah 4 v 1-4). The temple of God will be built in Jerusalem (Ezekiel 40) on a remodeled landscape (Zechariah 14 v 4) to which all nations will come to worship God (Zechariah 8 v 20-23). The kingdom of God will be a reality where the ground of the whole earth will be free from the curse of weeds, desease ad infertility, but for the time being God has set the ground as a figure of the fertile and verdant mind of mankind (created originally as a 'garden' of fruitful delight to God Galatians 5 v 22-23) but which has been defiled by the rule of the enmity resident within us. This enmity must be overcome by the power of the Holy Spirit (Revelation 2 v 7, 11, 17, 26 etc), so that the ground of our heart, mind, soul and character can become a place where the laws of God in Christ take root and rule over us as it will be the kingdom of God as Jesus said, “Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17 v 21). Before there can be any hope of living for ever in the kingdom of God on this earth under the rulership of Jesus Christ, the soul, character, heart and mind of every hopeful believer must first be rid of the effects of the rulership of the enmity and replaced by the government of Christ while in their mortal life (before the return of Christ), in the same way that the land of Canaan was to be rid of its pagan inhabitants and their habits and ultimately prepared for the kingdom of David and Solomon where the law of God ruled. Paul likened this change as to be 'translated' in mind, heart and aspirations into the kingdom while still physically living in our mortal

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God state, "Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:" (Colossians 1 v 12-19). And as Israel were warned if they permitted any pagan inhabitants to remain they would loose the hope of salvation (Numbers 33 v 55), so the same conditions apply to us with the effects of the enmity within us, if we do not drive them out by the word of God inspired by the Holy Spirit, they will become snares and pits for our souls causing our characters to fall from the grace of the promises of the covenant of God, “Else if ye do in any wise go back, and cleave unto the remnant of these nations, even these that remain among you, and shall make marriages with them, and go in unto them, and they to you: Know for a certainty that the LORD your God will no more drive out any of these nations from before you; but they shall be snares and traps unto you, and scourges in your sides, and thorns in your eyes, until ye perish from off this good land which the LORD your God hath given you” (Joshua 23 v 12-13). For now Jerusalem is a burdensome stone to all the world as a witness to the truth and veracity of the word of God (Zechariah 12 v 1-3) and the land of promise is divided and beset with violence because of the anger of God, "Wherefore my fury and mine anger was poured forth, and was kindled in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem; and they are wasted and desolate, as at this day." (Isaiah 44 v 6). However, it will not be for ever, "For thus hath the LORD said, The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end." (Isaiah 4 v 27). ********************* Chapter 22 The covenant to Isaac Isaac shared the same faith in the promises of the covenant of God as his father Abraham in his humble, compliant and trusting spirit that God requires in all the members of His family and that was perfected in His Beloved son Jesus Christ, a spirit of trust even to death. Abraham chose a wife for Isaac his son, not of the local population, but from the land of his nativity and Isaac loved the wife his father chose. The faith of both of these men was that God would raise up a savior (of whom Isaac was an antitype) to be the head of an eternal family and God would provide a wife/companion for that savior taken from the people that he had seperated himself from. Thus in Abraham's choice of wife for him, Isaac was reassured of the greater fiulfillment of the covenant of God in that he also would be a member of that multitudinous companion for his savior Jesus Christ, chosen by God and seperated from his nativity of servitude to the enmity. Isaac loved Rebekah as Jesus loves his companion. God repeated His promise to Isaac and reaffirmed the covenant that was the hope of Abel, Enoch, Noah and Abraham. The promise was a confirmation of the promise to his father, “And the LORD appeared unto him, and said, Go not down into Egypt; dwell in the land which I shall tell thee of: Sojourn in this land, and I will be with thee, and will bless thee; for unto thee, and unto thy seed, I will give all these

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God countries, and I will perform the oath which I sware unto Abraham thy father; And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my law” (Genesis 26 v 1-5). Isaac was shown that the choice of God of the one on whom He will rest His favour is not the one that man would necessarily choose, nor the one that aspires to the 'blessing of the father's' by natural birth. Isaiah later said of God, "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55 v 8-9) and Jesse the father of king David was also told what Isaac was made to learn, “But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart” (I Samuel 16 v 7) Isaac and Rebekah had two sons who were twins (Esau and Jacob). Esau was the firstborn and natural inheritor of the blessing of Abraham and Isaac, and Isaac was determined to bestow this favour on him, but due to the wisdom and perception of his wife Rebekah, Jacob was made to receive it and thus fulfilled the promise of God to Rebekah, “And the LORD said unto her, Two nations are in thy womb, and two manner of people shall be separated from thy bowels; and the one people shall be stronger than the other people; and the elder shall serve the younger” (Genesis 25 v 23). Jacob was a character in the likeness of the future beloved son of God, whereas Esau was a 'man of the world'. Jacob was a meek and unpretentious man content with life at home and shepherding his flock of sheep, where Esau (a hunter) was physically robust, gregarious and hungry for wider horizons. Isaac was made to realise that the hand of God acted through his wife that the choice of God to carry the hope of salvation would not be the choice of man (his choice) but that it would be by a man chosen of God who was meek, quiet, unattractive to the flesh, a natural shepherd and a lover of the house of God (Isaiah 53). For this Isaac, although the natural head of the household, loved his wife. ********************* Chapter 23 1) The covenant of God in Jacob 2) Unity between God and man 1) The covenant of God in Jacob Jacob learned through his mother Rebekah that the savior from the curse of God they all needed would be a son born of their lineage who would gain the birthright of the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God firstborn to life everlasting by giving himself as a sacrifice of atonement according to the will of God, his Father. By that sacrifice, in fear (reverence) of his Father, he would provide a covering for the naked inadequacy of others so that they also could share the hope of the blessing of resurrection from the dead. In those days, the firstborn son held the 'birthright' and received his inheritance on the death of the father. This was no trivial inheritance for the birthright not only included dominance over all other siblings, but a double portion of the possession of the father. In Isaac's case the inheritance included the promises within the covenant of God given to Abraham and Isaac. Eau had shown no interest in the reality of these future promises and had in fact traded them for immediate enjoyments. In contrast Jacob had shown an intense interest in them and displayed faith in God by works (Genesis 25 v 29-34). Thus by faith in God, Jacob became the holder of the inheritance of the longterm promises of God and thereby the rightful holder of the birthright (Hebrews 12 v 16-17). Rebecca knew of this and also understood that for all believers to receive the blessing of the promises of God, another 'greater' son of promise would have to be born who by similar but greater faith would obtain the birthright of eternal life over the original firstborn Adam who 'sold' his 'birthright' for a morsel of fruit when prompted by the serpent. Adam is represented by all mankind since who have consistently despised the covenant of God by sin. Rebecca knew that Isaac was ready to pass on the 'right' of the firstborn to Esau due to his old age but she also knew that Jacob would be the choice of God due to his faith and the custody of the promises of the covenant of God were always His choice. Rebecca saw that the custody of the promises of redemption from death was more important than Esau's present gain of Isaac's wealth, and that Jacob was the rightful custodian. She saw Jacob as the antitype of the 'greater' son and according to her faith Rebekah told Jacob that the choice of God for the necessary sacrificial sin offering in order to purchase the blessing of forgiveness of sins and everlasting life was a kid of the goats (the goat was later shown by God to be the animal that would represent the taking away of sin, Leviticus 4 v 22-35, the scapegoat Leviticus 16). Rebekah showed Jacob that to receive the blessing of the promises of the covenant of God in eternal life, they would all need to be 'covered' by the sacrifice of the sin offering ordained by God. Therefore to receive the custody of the covenant through Isaac, he would need to be 'covered' by the skin of the goat in clear foresight of the need to be covered by the sin offering yet to come in Jesus Christ, “And she put the skins of the kids of the goats upon his hands, and upon the smooth of his neck” (Genesis 27 v 16) where the apostles have told us, “Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered” (Romans 4 v 7), “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3 v 27), “And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness” (Ephesians 4 v 24). Jacob obeyed his mother and approached his father Isaac in fear and trembling to gain the blessing knowing that he had no 'natural' right to that blessing. Isaac 'inspected' his covering and gave him custody of the promises of God and all the rights of the firstborn (Genesis 17). Jesus Christ the rightful holder of the rights of the firstborn, replaced Adam (and his race) who all have sold their birthright for immediate benefits of the enmity, and thus became the firstborn of a new creation of righteous people (I

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Corinthians 15 v 12-58). It is indicative to us that we can approach God in prayer to receive His blessing knowing that we have no right other than through the covering of Jesus Christ the firstborn (John 14 v 6). He has received the blessing of the promise of eternal life in the covenant of God and we have no right to it, but one day will have to approach Jesus Christ in hope of mercy in the day of judgment in the same way. Jacob received the blessing of God through Isaac because of his faith. He was hated for it in the same way that Abel was hated of Cain (I John 4 v 12) the greater son of God was hated for his faith (Mark 15 v 10). Because of the anger of Esau, Jacob was told by Rebekah to flee from the envy of his brother and in obedience he journeyed to the land of his mother’s family during which journey God showed him the outworking of His covenant in greater detail through the vision of a 'ladder'. The covenant of God (passed to the custody of Jacob from Isaac) was well established that a mortal man would overcome the enmity in life by overcoming the prompting's of the enmity and by final victory in death through shedding his blood, and would be raised to everlasting life. By this means making a way possible for the salvation of a family out of many nations, but what God now showed Jacob was how that mortal man could overcome the enmity and gain the grace and favour of the merciful God. 2) Unity between God and man Peace between God and man was removed when Adam and Eve disobeyed God. God showed (by way of a dream) how the greater son would restore peace between God and mortal man. In Jacob's dream a ladder was placed between earth and heaven, as it is recorded, “And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it” (Genesis 28 v 12). Referring to this dream, Jesus said to Nathaniel, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man” (John 1 v 51). There is no record of this literally taking place but what was seen by all who were with Jesus and believed was that the character of God (Exodus 34 v 5-7) was seen in the mortal body of Jesus, as a frail earthen vessel filled with the effects of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5 v 22-24). Paul wrote, “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory” (I Timothy 3 v 16). Jesus asked Philip “Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?” (John 14 v 9). Previously Jesus had said concerning his Father, “I speak to the world those things which I have heard of him. I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things” (John 8 v 26-28) and again, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise” (John 5 v 19). The original meaning of the word ‘ladder’ was a stairway or rampart that unites two different levels as one, in the same simple way that a staircase unites two floors into one house. The two levels are God who is holy and mankind who are unholy. By keeping every command of God and practicing every virtuous emotion of God, Jesus

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God changed his character to that of God in a mortal frame. Thus Jesus said, “I and my Father are one” (John 10 v 30), and was able to pray to God his Father at the end of his life, “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me” (John 17 v 20-23). Unity between God and His created children is the purpose of the covenant. This unity was the faith and hope of Jacob which God confirmed to him in the dream on his journey of escape from the 'wiles' of the enmity (Ephesians 6 v 10-11). For us the peace of unity with God (John 14 v 26-27) is also a 'way of escape' (I Corinthians 10 v 13) in our journey of faith away from the 'roaring' of the enmity (I Peter 5 v 610). It is a "new and living way" spoken of by Jesus, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14 v 6), and Paul of that way of salvation, “By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh” (Hebrews 10 v 20). The fullness of the promise of the unifying ‘ladder’ will be seen in the Kingdom of God on earth where the same prophetic word ‘ladder’ is used but translated as ‘highway’, “And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein” (Isaiah 35). Jacob understood the way in which the promised beloved son would become the redeemer of a family and the peacemaker between God and man by allowing the full power of the Holy Spirit by the word of God to rule in his heart, to overcome and kill the enmity within him. This is the same gospel and faith of today, for it is the same covenant of the same God who gave and remains faithful to the same promises. ********************* Chapter 24 The name of Israel There is probably not a man or woman on earth today that has not heard of the name ‘Israel’ due to the fact that it is carried by the Jews who inhabit the disputed land east of the Mediterranean, once known as Palestine, but now renamed Israel. The origin of this name, it’s meaning and significance has been lost in the hatred and counterbitterness that surrounds this nation, but one thing is without doubt, they are witnesses of the living God whose has a purpose with this earth through His covenant with mankind confirmed in the promises given to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to whom this land was given. Isaiah said, “Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the people be assembled: who among them can declare this, and shew us former things? let them bring forth their witnesses, that they may be justified: or let them hear, and

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God say, It is truth. Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour. I have declared, and have saved, and I have shewed, when there was no strange god among you: therefore ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, that I am God” (Isaiah 43 v 9-11). Jacob was returning to the land of Canaan twenty years after fleeing for his life because Esau his brother swore to kill him (Genesis 27 v 41). Jacob had no reason to doubt that Esau still hated him and therefore approached Canaan with fear of death but was set on obeying the command of God to return (Genesis 32 v 6-12). Although facing possible death Jacob showed that his faith in the promises and blessing of God was stronger than his fears, and in turn God reassured him of his ever-presence to those who enter into the covenant with Him and Jacob responded with a mental and physical demonstration that his belief was faith by grappling with the angel to receive a blessing (Genesis 32 v 1-2 & 24). This word 'wrestle' literally means 'very fine dust' and is used here in that sense because of the cloud of fine dust disturbed by intense activity such as two men grappling with each other. The covenant of God was that in return for obedience to His word, mortal man would become as the angels (the immortal messengers of God), a promise that Jesus reaffirmed (Matthew 22 v 29-32). This was the hope and desire of Jacob which he held fast and would not let go until he received a blessing from the angel. In it's greater fulfillment it was the same overriding desire of Jesus that enabled him to 'wrestle' to establish and hold on to the faith God required (Matthew 4 v 1-11), and Jesus encouraged all who follow him in his final message "Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown" (Revelation 3 v 11 and frequently elsewhere).

Despite being disabled Jacob 'wrestled' all night with the messenger of God in order to receive the blessing of God. He did hold fast to that hope all night and as a result he was told by the angel, “Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed” (Genesis 32 v 28). God thus confirmed His covenant that the 'greater' son who should come to bring the fulfillment of the promises of the covenant would not only wrestle with and hold fast to the hope of the covenant for unification with the angel of God during one night, but that he would wrestle throughout the whole dark night of his mortality from which he would emerge a physically wounded and disabled man - physically vulnerable to the whims of the flesh - but spiritually secure in the protection of the covenant of God and receive the blessing of resurrection from the grave and from mortality to immortality. So it is written, “But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.” (Isaiah 53).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God In this way Jesus became the Prince of Israel, the king of Israel, the chief cornerstone of the house of spiritual Israel, the firstborn of the new house of Israel by faith, the firstborn not by blood and the will of man but by faith and the Holy Spirit. ********************* Chapter 25 The covenant of God in the life of Joseph God gave Joseph two dreams which were later fulfilled as a demonstration of the power of God in a continuing revelation of the hope of the promises centred in His covenant with mankind. The fulfillment of those dreams were that a son beloved of his father would be hated by his brethren for no other reason than their fathers’ love for him, that he would be sold out of the family to the Gentiles, that he would be considered as dead, that in captivity he would descend to the depths of a dungeon of death although innocent of guilt, that he would be raised from that state of death to the rulership of a kingdom under the supreme ruler himself, that he would make a way possible for his family to be saved from starvation, dismemberment and extinction, and that they would all bow down in respect and obeisance to him. When this dream had been fulfilled Joseph said to his brethren, “Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that ye sold me hither: for God did send me before you to preserve life. And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance” (Genesis 45 v 5-7). Joseph was beloved of Jacob his father above all his brothers even as Jesus was beloved of God above all the men in Israel. Of Joseph it is written, “Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours” (Genesis 37 v 3) and of Jesus, “And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3 v 17). Joseph was hated of his brothers for the same reasons that Jesus was hated of his brethren (Genesis 45 v 4, 8 & 18; John 15 v 25), Joseph was sold to the Gentiles as Jesus was sold to Pilate and the Romans (Genesis 37 v 26; Matthew 26 v 15, Luke 2 v 1). Joseph entered the depths of a dungeon of death as a figure of the innocent death of Jesus (Genesis 39 v 20; Mark 15 v 46); Joseph was raised out of the prison dungeon as a type of the resurrection of Jesus Christ (Genesis 41 v 14; Luke 24 v 6). Joseph was elevated to the right hand of Pharaoh with power over the whole land of Egypt even as Jesus in the greater fulfillment has been raised to the right hand of God and awaits the power of the kingdom of God across the whole earth. Ii was written of Pharaoh, “And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried before him, Bow the knee: and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt” (Genesis 41 v 43) and is written of Jesus, “The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool” (Psalms 110 v 1). By his wisdom Joseph stored the corn of the land to provide the bread of life for his family, The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God even as Jesus stored the word of God in the garners of his heart to make possible the bread of life (Genesis 41 v 47-49, Psalm 119 v 11; John 6). The brethren of Joseph were made to bow before him in respect and reverence even as the saints will be in subjection to Jesus and the Jews will bow down to him. It is written of Joseph's brethren, “And they bowed down their heads, and made obeisance” (Genesis 43 v 28) and it is written of the saints, “And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints” (Revelation 5 v 8) and it is further written of the Jews, “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn” (Zechariah 12 v10). By the power of God hidden within the dreams of Joseph, God revealed His covenant in greater detail for us to have hope and comfort in His mercy, because we are by nature as the 10 brethren of Joseph with regard to Jesus as Isaiah wrote, “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not” (Isaiah 53 v 3). The reformation of our soul, the conversion of our character, the sanctification we are to undergo is to be in respect of and submission to the firstborn of the new family of God (‘first ripe sheaf’ I Corinthians 15 v 23), the light of the world, the ‘bright and morning star’, Jesus Christ, in accordance with the revealing of the conditions of the covenant of God in the dreams of Joseph, “For, behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf arose, and also stood upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about, and made obeisance to my sheaf. And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me” (Genesis 37 v 7-9). The faith in the hope and submission to the conditions of the covenant of God in the Old and New Testaments are one and have never changed and make the two Testaments inseparable. Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Joseph had no formal law of God as we do not have, but we are to have the same obedience to the will of God, the same faith in the covenant and the same hope of forgiveness of our sins through a Redeemer that they had. ********************* Chapter 26 The covenant of God through Moses - conditions of meekness and humility Moses was born into an age of oppression ruled by the 'enmity' in the despotic Pharoah and his retinue. Moses was chosen by God from birth for the specific purpose

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God of the furtherance of His covenant by being the mediator between God and Israel in order to deliver his people out of bondage in Egypt to the promised land of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and to give them the written covenant of God (enshrined in the Law of God). God chose Moses to be an antitype of the greater son of God, Jesus Christ (fore-ordained and raised up by God) through whom the fulness of the covenant will be fulfilled. He was born of mortal nature into the race of enmity ruled mankind and in particular the infamous and despotic Herod for the specific purpose of fulfilling the covenant of God, by being the mediator between God and man thus leading the friends of God out of bondage to the enmity to the promised land of eternal life on the earth free for ever from the curse. The birth of Moses and his early years were of the most humble, he was born under the sentence of death (Exodus 1 v 16 & 22), was hidden in a wicker basket and left to the vagaries of nature (Exodus 2 v 1-4) as a prefigurement of his redeemer. God caused the birth of Jesus to be a humiliating experience (Luke 2 v 4-7) and was immediately put under the sentance of death (Matthew 2 v 16-18). Despite being elevated to the highest household in the land (Pharoah's) Moses never forgot his humble origins and later fought for his peoples rights' (Exodus 2 v 11-14). Jesus was elevated to the highest household that can ever exist (the son of God) and endued with the Holy Spirit to perform all miracles, but he never lost his meekness and humility and fought to the death for the redemption of his friends by combating and killing the enmity (prefigured in Egypt). Moses was a man chosen by God to be a living example of the one through whom God would fulfill His covenant, a signpost that pointed to Christ, an antitype of the Redeemer that would deliver the people of God from bondage to sin in Egypt to the promised land of the kingdom of God on earth (I Corinthians 10 v 1-4), a figure of the future mediator that all who are to be redeemed from death need. Of Moses it was written, “Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth” (Numbers 12 v 3). Thus Moses was the antitype of Jesus, the meekest man not only of his generation but of all mankind in every age. Meekness is a quality that is despised and abused by human nature, but God showed that His covenant will be fulfilled through a man who was the meekest and lowliest man of all time as it is written of Jesus, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls” (Matthew 11 v 29). Of Jesus it is written, “Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass” (Matthew 21 v 5). God showed that the firstborn and elder of the family of His covenant would be meek and humble thus setting the standard for all members of the family whether they be mighty in office as Joseph and Daniel or rich in goods as Job and Abraham, or materialy destitute as Jeremiah and the widow of Zarephath or as Jesus who had 'nowhere to lay his head' (Matthew 8 v 20), or as Paul wrote who changed from 'mighty' to 'destitute' who "suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ" (Philippians 3 v 1-8) who learned by experience that “God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty” (I Corinthians 1 v 27). Isaiah later wrote of the fulfillment of the covenent of God and those who will be embraced by it, "For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones." (Isaiah 57 v 15). The work finished by the son of God, Jesus Christ, was to "preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound" (Isaiah 61 v 1-3), (Luke 4 v 18-19), (John 17 v 1-4). Jesus promised, “Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth” (Matthew 5 v 5). ********************* Chapter 27 The burning bush, the covenant in the name of God God showed Moses that those who are ‘mighty’ in human endeavour must be converted to rely on divine endeavour if the are to have a part in His covenant, as Paul was also told by Jesus, “I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks” (Acts 9 v 5). So also was Moses converted who, at 40 years old, mightily engaged in freeing his people from Egyptian oppression by killing an Egyptian man, acting in his faith of the promise of God to Abraham “Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years; But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full” (Genesis 15 v 13-16). Because of this faith he was reviled by his Israelite neighbour who sneered, “Who made thee a prince and a judge over us? intendest thou to kill me, as thou killedst the Egyptian? And Moses feared, and said, Surely this thing is known” (Exodus 2 v 14). Moses began his conversion by fleeing from the influences of Egypt and became a humble shepherd where he learned patient reliance on God for Him to work out His covenant as He had promised as Paul later wrote of him, “By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible” (Hebrews 11 v 24-27). After 40 years as a shepherd with the same faith as his forefathers, God showed him the greater extent of His covenant with mankind, in that God would dwell in a ‘family tree’ of mortal men (grown by faith from one root and stock in whom God would dwell) and that they would ultimately be enveloped in the fullness of the Holy Spirit and live for ever. This promise was prefigured in a burning bush, “And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed” (Exodus 3 v 2).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Moses shared the faith of Jacob who had been shown (by the dream of the ladder) that God would be manifest in a mortal man (Jesus Christ, the Saviour) by the transformation of the character of that man from subjection to the enmity to governorship of God, but now Moses was shown that through this ‘man’ God would dwell in a multitude, and illustrated the promise as branches growing out of a single stem and root (Christ). The angel of the Lord was in the bush that burned, but there are many angels (literally messengers of a master) in all of whom God dwells and is seen through their work, which is taught in their Hebrew name (elohim, translated as ‘God’ in English). Elohim is a plural version of the Hebrew word ‘El’ translated also as the same English word ‘God’, but teaches us of the power of covenant of God in that He is one (el) and in Him and of Him are a multitude of angels (elohim) like whom the saints are to be, i.e. God (el) is in angels as He will be in those represented in the burning bush. This promise was confirmed by Jesus when he referred to the resurrected faithful, “Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection” (Luke 20 v 36). Moses already knew the name of God (‘El’ in Hebrew, who was in the angels and who bore His name and character), but for Moses and us to understand the fullness of His covenant, God showed Moses the fullness of the name of God (El) Himself - the author of the covenant - that the singular unique name of God was ‘I AM’, emphasised by repetition, ‘I AM THAT I AM’, as is written, "And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you” (Exodus 3 v 14), where the repetition excludes any other deity, as Isaiah later wrote, “I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me. Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else” (Isaiah 45). The memorial ‘I AM’ (“this is my memorial unto all generations” Exodus 3 v 15) is from the same root word as the Hebrew word ‘Yah’, from which comes the names 'Yahweh' and 'Yehovah' (Exodus 6 v 3) and was given to Moses to specifically teach the children of Israel and ourselves what the full extent of the promise of the covenant of God is. The root word of ‘I AM’ and 'Jehovah' denotes ‘self existence’ as ‘He who was’ and ‘He who is’ everlasting and depending on no other for life, and ‘I AM’ is a extended form of the root with ‘will be’ added to it, making the compound word literally mean ‘He who was, He who is and He who will be’ (all in the singular) (see Revelation 1 v 8) which interpreted simply means ‘He who is eternal and self existent’ and is the true meaning of Yehovah, Yah and Yahweh, but with the figure of the burning bush and the angel within it, the name 'I AM' teaches far more, indeed that God ‘will be’ manifest in the future. Jesus said of himself, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am” (John 8 v 58) where the words ‘I am’ are the same Hebrew words as the memorial

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God name of Yehovah ‘I AM’, teaching that God (el) was in him and that Jesus was the fulfillment of the name ‘I AM’, in that God (self existent and eternal) was manifest in his character by the Holy Spirit in a mortal body, and was seen in the denial of temptation and victory over the enmity within him, which was later confirmed by Paul (I Timothy 3 v 16). Therefore the name of Yehovah (I AM) means far more than selfexisting and everlasting, for it means that ‘He who was’ (pre-existing and manifest in the angels), ‘He who is’ (existing and manifest in the angels), and ‘He who will be’ (in Jesus (Hebrews 1) and in the saints). This promise was prefigured in the burning bush teaching of a people in whom God ‘will be’ seen and in whom He ‘will be’ dwelling and ‘will be’ known. ‘I AM’ (I will be) is emphatic in that it teaches that the will of God is omnipotent in all creation, and that His purpose will be completed in the same way that His mercy will be given to those who He chooses (keeping the choice away from man) as God told Moses of His favour, “and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew mercy” (Exodus 33 v 19). Time-limited grace and mercy is shown to every man and woman without partiality in that they are given life to enjoy, whereas (after the manner of that literal assurance) a 'few' repentant sanctified souls (Matthew 22 v 14) will be given unlimited mercy and grace according to the promise of God in His covenant, “Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty” (Exodus 34 v 7) where the ‘guilty’ are the unrepentant, because, as Tyndale originally translated the phrase 'the guilty' as , “no man is innocent before thee”. This is the covenant of God to mankind, a covenant of mercy, of grace, of patience, of goodness and truth as God reaffirmed His promise in the fullness of the power of His name, ‘LORD God’ (Yehovah Elohim, ‘I AM’ manifest in the angels, ‘I AM’ manifest in the law, ‘I AM’ manifest in a Son by fulfilling that law, and ‘I AM’ manifest in a people by the blood of that Son) according as God told Moses, “And the LORD descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the LORD. And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation” (Exodus 34 v 6). This is the covenant of God with mankind, not a covenant of terror and dread of an angry Deity, but a covenant of mercy and compassion on repentant children as is written, “Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him” (Psalm 103 v 13), and “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (II Peter 3 v 9), and “Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live? For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye” (Ezekiel 18), and “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon” (Isaiah 55 v 6-13). With regard to the keeping of the ‘spirit’ of the law Jesus said of the Pharisees who kept to the ‘letter’ of the law (who did not perceive ‘I AM’ manifest in the law), “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone” (Matthew 23 v 23). ‘I AM’ is now manifest in the Son (Jesus Christ) through the spirit of the law and eternal life, and in like manner ‘I AM’ will yet be manifest in a people when they are sanctified by his blood through baptism by water and by fire - the Holy Spirit (Luke 3 v 16, and see accompanying “The lifetime vow of baptism”). The 'name' of God is the covenant of God. The central promise and hope of that covenant (‘I AM’ in a multitude’) will be fulfilled when Jesus has returned to the earth and removed the rulership of the enmity as it is written, “And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God” (Revelation 21 v 3), and for them, “there shall be no more curse: but 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 shall be in their foreheads” (Revelation 22 v 3-4), thus fulfilling the 'I AM' manifest in a multitude as prefigured in the burning bush. ********************* Chapter 28 Exodus Despite being a shepherd in the wilderness of Midian as an exile far from his family and people, Moses believed in the promises of God to Abraham (Genesis 15 v 13-16). From the exalted position of being the 'son of Pharaoh's daughter' (Hebrews 11v 24) to being a humble shepherd, God shaped Moses character in order for him to lead the deliverance of His people from oppression. Moses did whatever God overruled him to do in complete subjection, as an example of what is required of all those who are called to the covenant, most particularly the greater son of God, Jesus Christ, who was 'born to be king' (Matthew 2 v 1-2) being firstborn of the direct lineage of king David (Matthew 1) (Luke 3), yet allowed himself to be a servant of servants (Hebrews 5 v 8), (Mark 10 v 45). God gave Moses the great work of leading the deliverance from Egypt both to prove his belief as faith and to demonstrate to future generations more details of His covenant. God chose Moses to be an antitype of the savior (Jesus) that God would raise up who would lead those who God has chosen out of all generations and nations to the fulfillment of his promise of eternal life on the 'promised land' of earth. This prefigurement was a journey of escape (the Exodus) out of the land of Egypt to the land of the promises given to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, thus God commanded Moses

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God "And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey. Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel is come unto me: and I have also seen the oppression wherewith the Egyptians oppress them. Come now therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people the children of Israel out of Egypt." (Exodus 3 v 8-10). In this God confirmed His faithfulness to the promises given to Abraham that He would deliver his seed from oppression in the immediate future (Genesis 15 v 13-16), (Deuteronomy 7 v 6-11), (Deuteronomy 4 v 31) as a prefigurement of a far greater fulfillment of His promises than immediate deliverance of Israel from Egypt, God set this deliverance as a figure of a greater deliverance from the bondage to sin and the sentence of eternal death by Jesus Christ. The book of Exodus records the escape of Israel from Egypt and 'exodus' has come to represent 'to come or go out', but God was to show that there can be no 'exodus' from sin to eternal life without the shedding of the blood of His beloved son, Jesus Christ. Before they escaped, God commanded that the feast of Passover and of Unleavened Bread be eaten before the 'going out', in order to teach of the way of deliverance to salvation that will be fulfilled in Christ. Jesus was prefigured in the both Passover lamb and the unleavened bread. The lamb was to be a male without blemish of the first year (Exodus 12 v 1-17), it was to be separated from his fellows and slain on the 3rd day and it's blood painted around the doors. It was to be roast with fire and eaten with bitter herbs and bread without leaven at the same time that the 'strength of Egypt' was broken in the death of all the firstborn in whose dwellings there was no evidence of the blood of the passover lamb. (Exodus 12). By this God taught and confirmed more details of the outworking of His covenant in that for deliverance from 'bondage to sin' to be possible a male redeemer (without sin I Peter 2 v 21-25) would be separated from his fellows (in his ministration by his character and life, Isaiah 53) and slain in the 3rd year of this 'separation'. For deliverance from the plague of eternal death and deliverance from bondage to sin, his life (figured in the shed blood Galatians 3 v 27-29) is to be displayed in the manner of life we lead as the token of our faith (I Corinthians 6 v 14-20). Leaven is the symbol of the enmity of which a small amount in the heart can swell and fill the mind causing it to rise up in pride, hatred and envy (Mark 15 v 8-10, 1 John 3 v 12, I Corinthians 5 v 6-8). No leaven was to be anywhere in the dwellings of Israel and they were to eat unleavened bread. Deliverance from Egypt was a once-only event teaching us that there is only one opportunity to escape from bondage to sin by baptism (Hebrews 6 v 4-6) and continuance of the 'escape' must be by weekly association with Christ by eating his flesh and displaying his life in our life (Luke 22 v 19-20), (I Corinthians 10 v 16), (I Corinthians 11 v 26), otherwise if we neglect to keep this command of Jesus, our 'escape' by baptism is void and we return to the 'Egypt' of dominance of the enmity within us.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God God decreed that when the passover lamb died, all the firstborn of Egypt were slain. This was not only judgment on a wicked nation but to teach future generations of the victory of Christ over the enmity that as Jesus died on the cross the 'strength' of the enmity was slain, as Paul wrote "that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil” (Hebrews 2 v 14), (Isaiah 58 v 12), (Luke 23 v 4446) Israel 'came out' in haste (Exodus 12 v 11) teaching that 'separation'. by baptismal vow from rulership of the enmity in our heart and mind is not a casual undertaking, but one requiring effort and loss to our 'natural' man and an eagerness to serve God 'the first love' - (Revelation 2 v 4). God led them in a way that was not the way man would have chosen, He led them to the apparent dead-end of the desert at the shores of the Red Sea instead of the direct route along the coast, thus teaching that the way to salvation is not our choice (the easy option with least effort required), but God's choice mocked by man as over zealous and unnecessary, as it was by Pharaoh's who pursued them to an apparent trap at the Red Sea. God opened the waters of the Red Sea in order for Israel to cross surrounded on each side by a wall of water and a cloud of water overhead as a figure of baptism by full immersion in water. Pharaoh's and the strength of his army followed in hatred and perished in the returning waters, in the same way that all sins are forgiven and tarnish by the enmity washed away by God and a clean start is made (Exodus 14). The Exodus from Egypt is the figure of the vow of baptism by full immersion in water into the death of Jesus Christ and the beginning of a life of spiritual migration - by the action of the Holy Spirit - from our natural state of servitude to the 'Egypt' of the enmity towards the liberty of the peace of God by obedience to His word, as Paul later wrote of Israel’s crossing of the Red Sea, “And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea” (I Corinthians 10 v 1-10). A more detailed account of this revelation of the covenant of God unto salvation is written in the accompanying work ‘The lifetime vow of baptism’, chapters 3 & 3 The first principles of truth”. ********************* Chapter 29 The covenant in the law In fulfillment of His promise at the burning bush (Exodus 3 v 12) God gave Moses His law based on the ten commandments written on two tablets of stone (Deuteronomy 5 v 6-21) to reveal how the fulfillment of the name of God 'I AM' would be fulfilled (The burning bush). The first two tablets were created and written by God and given to Moses (Exodus 24 v 12) but were physically broken by him (Exodus 33 v 15-16 & 19) as a witness against the children of Israel when he found them in the deliberate act of breaking that very law of Covenant by the worship of the idol of the golden calf (Exodus 32).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Moses was commanded to hew two more stone tables (Exodus 34 v 1) on which God rewrote the ten commandments. In this act God taught that He would write His law and fulfil His covenant in the heart of a man 'hewn' from the 'earthiness' of mankind, because Adam (who God created out of the dust of the earth) terminally broke His law. The ten commandments were the foundation and corner stone of the fullness of a full code of conduct which incorporated 'civil' law (for the daily life of the people), 'ecclesiastical' law (for the ministration of the Tabernacle), a law of the 'calendar' (the feasts and convocations), the law of 'worship' (the offerings and vows), and the law of the Tabernacle (a pattern, dimensions and material specifications for a place where God would meet with His people). The 'civil' law (based on the ten commandments) was both the expression of how God intended man to live and the teacher of what Jesus would do (Psalm 119 v 11&105) where all others failed, it was the pointer of how one man would fulfil the covenant and become their redeemer, as Jesus said of himself "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil." (Matthew 5 v 17). The 'ecclesiastical' law governed the daily and annual ministrations of the High priest (and his assisting family of priests) in their work in the tabernacle as an antitype teaching of the work of a greater High Priest who would become minister and mediator between them and God (Hebrews chapters 1 - 9). The law of the 'calendar' taught the outworking of the covenant of God in a man who began as the passover lamb (Leviticus 23 v 1-8), who progressed to the 'first fruits of righteousness' (Leviticus 23 v 9-14) and brought redemption to a multitude as one body of the 'first fruits'(Leviticus 23 v 15-21) becoming the only one who entered into the eternal state for the forgiveness of the sins of his people (Leviticus 23 v 26-32), and finally the teacher of the kingdom of peace that that High Priest/King would rule over (Leviticus 23 v 33-44). The law of 'worship' directed the people to understand how one man would become a perfect offering for atonement of sin by shedding his blood in death and consuming his 'flesh' in the fire of the Holy Spirit day and night (Numbers 28 v 1-10), in order for them to demonstrate their need for and belief in a savior by sacrificing specific animals - so that they could acceptably praise God for His mercy (Leviticus 1) - for remission of their sins (Leviticus 4, 5, 6, 7) - for peace with God (Leviticus 3) - and for all manner of cleansing of uncleanness. The law of the tabernacle taught that there was only one way and place in which God would be worshiped, as a figurative pattern of the future house of many people among whom He would dwell as God promised in His covenant, from the foundation pads of silver (Numbers 3 v 44-51), (Exodus 38 v 25-27), to the Most Holy place of the sanctuary (Exodus 26 v 33-35) and the Ark of the Covenant within it (Exodus 5 v 1022). Every detail of the tabernacle teaches the outworking of the covenant of God through Jesus Christ and the preparation of a companion family of people who would be 'built-up' in him, 'his bone and his flesh' as it is written, "And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God. And they shall know that I am the LORD

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God their God, that brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, that I may dwell among them: I am the LORD their God." (Exodus 29 v 45-46), and in prospect, "And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God." (Revelation 21 v 1-4). The law of God given to Moses in Mount Sinai was the covenant of God embodied in writing and it prefigured the fullness of the hope, the essence of the promises and the details of the terms and conditions required of those who were to hope for salvation. It was given not as a new development or idea, but it was given because of the lack of belief and faith in the enlarged family of Abraham (the Children of Israel), a lack of the faith that the forefathers from Abel to Moses had, who knew what the will of God was, what the hope was and what the conditions were and kept them without needing it to be written down. The law taught by letter - that those forefathers knew by faith - that a mortal man would overcome and finally destroy the enmity within himself in shedding his blood in willing sacrifice to God who would raise him back to life and to immortality, thus make a way possible that others could share in the blessing of everlasting life with him on this earth by manifesting the character of God in a mortal body "And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory". (I Timothy 3 v 16). The law was a guide and a pointer to Christ, the law was the description of his work, it was the setting out in stone table the types, figures and shadows of the full extent of the covenant of God to be fulfilled in Christ as Paul wrote, “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith” (Galatians 3 v 24). All details of the law were a foreshadowing of the covenant of God in the life and works of Jesus Christ - the construction and orderliness of the Tabernacle and its furniture, the ministrations of the priesthood, the offerings, the feasts, the ten commandments and subsequent sundry laws which law taught the difference between spiritual and physical cleanliness and uncleanness and the way God has appointed for mankind from sinfulness to the hope of salvation via repentance, by faith in a man who would be a sacrifice for their sins. The teaching of this law showed the way that all men and women (up to the time of Christ) could lay hold on the hope of the forgiveness of their sins through the shed blood of the one that God would anoint as a redeemer and savior from a terminal grave. To confirm this revelation of the covenant, God said that He would raise up a Prophet out of the Children of Israel who would show all the details of this law in his life - even as Moses showed them all the pattern of the law in the Tabernacle and the volume of what God had told him in mount Sinai, “The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken; And the LORD said unto me, I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him” (Deuteronomy 18 v 15-22). Subsequent generations knew that this promised son of God, the Prophet, would be

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God the Messiah, literally meaning the ‘Anointed One’ as the Jews showed when John Baptism was teaching, “Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No. And they asked him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?” (John 1 v 21-25). By obedience to the will of God detailed in the law Jesus fulfilled every edict, every statute, every ‘jot and tittle’ of that law, thus rendering it obsolete as a civil jurisdiction when he died, as Jesus said, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil” (Matthew 5 v 17), and in so doing became the fulfillment of the memorial name of God, ‘I AM’ in that the character of God (expressed in the law) was seen in Jesus by the works that he did and the words that he spoke, in whom we have been released from the letter of the law of God and entered the faith of the fore fathers as Paul wrote, “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be” (Romans 8). The Spirit of the law of God is the power to divide between the word of God and the reasoning of the serpent, it is the line that separates good and evil, the demarcation between of right and wrong, the distinction between clean and unclean, the sanctification of holiness from the unholy, and that Spirit of the law is as active today as it was in Noah and the forefathers and as it was in the days if the children of Israel, except that now (as it was for those before the time of Moses and the few faithful under the law) the Spirit of the law is held in the conscience which directs the character without duress as Paul wrote, “Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another” (Romans 2 v 15). ********************* Chapter 30 The vow of the covenant The law recorded in the Old Testament was the embodiment of the covenant of God up until Christ. At the death and resurrection of Christ the 'letter' of the law was fulfilled and therefore it's work complete as a statuary civil and ceremonial code. Paul explained that a testament is of no practical value until the death of the testator, in the same way that our last will and testament is of no value until we die, so Paul wrote "For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth." (Hebrews 9 v 16-17). A testator is one who demonstrates (without ambiguity or fault) that a will, a testament or covenant is true, complete and fulfillable. The law was the will of God

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God who cannot die, but God chose Jesus (who was mortal) to be the law in a human body, thus Jesus became the will of God as Jesus said (John 14 v 6-11), as was foretold in the Psalms "Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required. Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart." (Psalm 40 v 6-8). The testator of the law of God was the son of God - Jesus Christ - and upon his death the law of the covenant in the Old Testament became of no further use as a civil jurisdiction because he had fulfilled it's teaching and it's reason for being there, Jesus was the Law. He become the living evidence and lively proof of the everlasting covenant expressed in the law and by the shedding of his blood, a New Testament was generated - built upon the Old Testament by faith in it - thus confirming both Testaments as revelations of one covenant, as Jesus testified, "For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins." (Matthew 26 v 28). A covenant is a solemn agreement drawn up by a benefactor and is of no practical value until the agreement is entered into and conjoined by a second independent party who accepts the conditions of the testament and enjoys the benefits offered by the benefactor. Until Israel entered into the covenant of God revealed in the testament of the law through Moses by an oath, the law stood alone as a detailed exposure of the will of God but had no power or influence to save them from an eternal grave. When Israel heard the covenant, (the laws and conditions) they entered into that covenant willingly and embraced the hope (the hope of the fore-fathers) by their vow to obey as it is written, “And all the people answered together, and said, All that the LORD hath spoken we will do” (Exodus 19 v 8), and again, “Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the LORD hath said will we do. And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the LORD hath made with you concerning all these words” (Exodus 24 v 3-8). By this vow (sealed with blood) the children of Israel entered into the covenant of God and agreed to keep all the conditions contained in it, by faith in the one who should come who would be the testator of its truth - the one in whom ‘I AM’ would be manifest - as Paul wrote concerning baptism, “Whereupon neither the first testament was dedicated without blood. Saying, This is the blood of the testament which God hath enjoined unto you” (Hebrews 9). Even though the vow of Israel was a collective vow, it was in fact a collection of individual vows and as a whole it was imperfect in that each member in each generation broke their covenant by sin. However, Jesus Christ - one of their members - vowed his vow to God that was never broken even when faced with a cruel death, ”Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God” (Hebrews 10 v 1-10) and again, “And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt” (Mark 14 v 36) and just before his death, "I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God world was. I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world." (John 17). By baptism (through total immersion in water by faith in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit - Matthew 28 v 19, Romans 6 v 3-16), the same covenant of God is entered into as a vow that binds us for life to the terms and conditions of the same covenant, in hope of enjoying the benefits that it will afford, even resurrection from the dead to life everlasting. Without a vow, without a solemn reciprocal oath to God, there can be no hope of salvation, and once made there can be no turning back as Solomon wrote, “When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed” (Ecclesiastes 5 v 4), and Paul confirmed, "For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,... Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?" (Hebrews 10 v 24-29) Baptism is an individual vow to God and no other man or woman has any part in it, it is our personal vow which we carry to the grave. Therefore in whatever circumstances we find ourselves due to our love of the truth, we cannot forget or neglect to pay that vow whether we remain in a group of similar fellows or find ourselves alone as many before us have - it remains a vow between us and our Maker through Jesus Christ. It is the same covenant that Abel entered into, that Enoch, Noah, Abraham vowed to keep, so we can never be alone in faith. ********************* Chapter 31 The covenant of God in the wilderness - Manna The exodus from Egypt was a factual event of history during the reign of Tuthmosis II (1472BC), but far from being an event of time and chance it was overruled by God as a real deliverance of a people according to God's promise to Abraham (Genesis 15 v 13-14), it was a demonstration of the covenant of God - as a type and figure of the calling out of all believers from captivity of sin to liberty as a further revelation of the power of the covenant of God unto salvation. The exodus was the beginning of a lifetime's wilderness journey (forty years to Israel) to the land of the promises to Abraham (Genesis 15 v 18-21), and stands as a type of our own journey of faith from baptism to the everlasting kingdom of God on earth. The journey began in Egypt with the Passover, it went through the Red Sea and into the wilderness where the law of God was embraced and Israel wandered for 40 years in an inhospitable land to finally cross the Jordan river and conquer the land of Canaan.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The exodus began with the death of the Passover lamb and the display of it's blood with the eating of its roast flesh (Exodus 12) to signify the opportunity for all subsequent generations of mankind to fellowship the life and death of Christ (who as a mortal man died and by whose blood shed in death forgiveness of our sins I Corinthians 5 v 7) and hope of everlasting life. The crossing of the Red Sea (Exodus 14) with the subsequent vow of Israel to be ruled by the law of God (Exodus 19 v 8) is a figure of our baptism and vow (I Corinthians 10 v 1-5). The journey through the wilderness portrays the period of our lifetime probation of faith and the entry into the promised land across Jordan - teaching of salvation for those who endure the journey. The wilderness was an 'uncultivated' land, and represents the mortal state of mankind under the rulership of the enmity within our heart. As Israel were given a law to show the how God would be manifest in a mortal man, so we have been shown how that the character of ‘I AM’ was manifest in Jesus and how after his resurrection he is now in ‘I AM’ as an immortal being (John 17 v 20-26) - see also (Chapter 27 The burning bush - the covenant within the name of God). The kindness and mercy of God in His covenant was that He would allow the substance of His character to be in mankind by gift of His Holy Spirit (John 14 v 1527) - for them to ingest, be nourished by, be reformed with ("Quench not the Spirit" I Thessalonians 5 v 19) in order for them to become like unto Him for their own salvation. To impress this promise in their hearts (which was engraved in Abraham's heart) God gave Israel daily bread six days a week at dawn (with sufficient for seven days) in the form of very small particles, white in colour and sweet (Exodus 16 v 1215 & 31) and described as being like 'coriander seed' (Numbers 11 v 7) so named from its furrowed and striped surface from the origin of the name 'coriander' - 'to incise, or to cut' - confirmed by the translation used in Exodus as being a 'small round thing' translated as 'sliced flakes, literally a sliver or peeling'. Its colour (or properly its appearance and resemblance) was of bdellium of which there is considerable difference of etymological opinion as to what this name describes both in the English translation, the Greek and the Hebrew originals, it is therefore only safe to interpret it according to what God intended the manna to represent. In this Parkhurst (Hebrew & English Lexicon, 1811 page 56) directs us not to the actual properties and uses of the material but to the sense of its root word from which it is derived and literally means to 'separate'. God commanded that some of this bread (one man's daily portion - an omer) should be put into the Ark of the Covenant in the most Holy Place within the tabernacle as a memorial of the one man which it represented by whom God would save His people (Exodus 16 v 32-36). That portion remained in the Ark without decay for as long as the manna was provided and taught that one man would be born of their lineage who would become the law of God in a mortal body (John 1 v 14), would give his body in sacrifice (John 2 v 18-22) in order to provide and sustain life (John 6 v 51) and after resurrection from death would be without decay (Luke 24 v 36-40). No man had ever before seen the bread that God sent and as a result Israel called it 'Manna' meaning 'what is it?' (Exodus 16 v 15) in prophetic ignorance that no man had been without any sin and in like manner they would not recognise Jesus when he

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God came (Matthew 21 v 10) (John 19 v 15). God was teaching Israel through the Manna of His son Jesus Christ whom He would send but they would not know who he was. God nourished Israel for 40 years with bread in a barren wilderness (Exodus 16 v 436). God provided these sweet, white particles for them both to make bread to sustain them in their journey and so that they could express their faith in offerings that their savior's body would be given in sacrifice. They were taught that they could not complete the journey without the gift of God - a savoir - as the bread of life (John 6 v 31-58), in whom - and by whom alone - the journey would be possible.The manna was the figure of the fulfillment of the name of God given to Moses - ‘I AM’ - God manifest in a people through one man . Like manna, each word of God is very small - such that the enmity does not know what it is nor it's value - but collected and kneaded together it is the bread and staff of life. It was Jesus who collected every word of God, that collated it and kneaded it (Hebrews 5 v 8) into a character and soul that perfectly reflected the character of his Creator - thus becoming the bread of life. Jesus found every tiny particle of the word of God to be the pure white of righteousness (Psalm 12 v 6), (Psalm 19 v 7-11), he found it able to make sharp incisions (coriander) to cut away superfluous thoughts as Paul described every word of God "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." (Hebrews 4 v 12), Jesus found every word of God had the ability to 'separate' (bdellium) good from evil (Isaiah 7 v 15) like dross from silver (Proverbs 25 v 4), and he found it to be very sweet like honey, "How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!" (Psalm 109 v 103). That man was born of a mortal parent by the intervention of God through the Holy Spirit (Luke 1 v 26-35) and displayed the substance of the character of God (Exodus 34 v 6-7) in a mortal body and gave himself in sacrifice (John 10 v 14-18) to be the lifeline to a people separated from bondage to sin. After his death he was resurrected, his mortal nature was changed to immortal and was raised into the presence of God (Psalm 110 v 1-4) (Acts 7 v 55-56). Of this bread - his body - Jesus said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. I am that bread of life. I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world” (John 6). This bread, this food of life, is the flesh of Christ by faith (not literally) in that although he was mortal and subject to temptation he never failed to kill temptation as it arose and became the 'firstfruits of righteousness' - which unsullied flesh enters our hearts by faith - to fill us (like the action of leaven) with the spirit and knowledge of Jesus in order for us to become like him, by the action of the Holy Spirit. This work continues - and must continue until death - in each one who vows by baptism to do ‘all that the LORD has said’ and renews that vow each week in the way appointed by the command of Jesus (see the accompanying text The lifetime vow of baptism) .

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 32 Water out of the rock God created Adam and Eve to enjoy the food and water of the earth (Genesis 2 v 16) all of which God had created for His pleasure (Revelation 4 v 11). After the curse was placed upon them (Genesis 3 v 17-18) God made food and water a necessity in order for them to replenish their declining energy until terminal decay returned their bodies to dust. Food and drink are essential to life, and God has used them as figures of His word. As food and water are essential for daily life, so likewise is spiritual 'food and water' essential for salvation by sanctification of the character in order to realise the hope of the promises of the covenant (John 17 v 19) (Hebrews 10 v 9-10). To teach Adam and Eve of the enormity of sin (and all who follow them) God cursed the creation because of sin with the result that not all the produce of creation is suitable for food and drink (poisonous plants, unclean creatures, sea water). These have no notoriety of themselves, but God has placed His curse on the earth because of our sins to teach us that in spiritual matters He has set clear lines of demarcation of what we should ingest and digest and what we should believe and what we should reject. During their wilderness journey of 40 years (teaching of the spiritual journey from servitude to the enmity by exodus through baptism to everlasting life by forgiveness of sins) God gave the Israel bread, quails and water (quails because of their insatiatable lust for flesh) as being of sufficient nourishment for their lifetime journey to the promised land. Typical of the enmity in all of us, Israel were not satisfied with God's simple provision - they lusted for the foods and drinks of Egypt (Numbers 11 v 4-9) for which God plagued them. God taught that for the promises of His covenant to be fulfilled in them (eternal life through salvation by forgiven of sins) the soul (the character) can be sanctified unto God by the spiritual 'food' and 'water' of the word of God that He alone provides. In subtle opposition to this will of God (that the 'word' and 'water' of His word alone can sanctify us) the thoughts, imaginations and words of the enmity within us are tasty, tempting and appetising - always contrary to God's word - titillating the 'taste buds' of our innermost spiritual desires. Israel were told of the power of the work of God (submission and trust in Him) in them, “And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live” (Deuteronomy 8 v 3 where ‘bread’ is any natural food). God gave Israel water out of the rock to drink in the dry and arid desert of Sinia to teach them that while there are many other palatable drinks to enjoy, only the spiritual water of His providing could save mankind from death, as Paul later wrote of Israel in the wilderness, “And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ” (I Corinthians 10 v 4). By the provision of water, God revealed His covenant of salvation in two seperate incidents, to teach us of the faith of our hope in the covenant of God in the washing away of our sins by the 're-hydrating' our naturally 'dried up' faith and by the purification of our soul - like the action of natural clean water in the cleansing our

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God innermost organs (kidney's, liver etc) of fats, salts and poisonous impurities of our body. God has used the water He created to teach of the power of His word when inspired by the Holy Spirit. The word of God is the verbal and written manifestation of the Spirit of God as was shown in the power of creation "and God said, Let there be...." when the heaven and earth were created by His command (Genesis 1). First God created the earth as a globe with a mantle of water and light (the light was His presence as the sun was not created until the 4th day) and on the 2nd day God seperated pure water from the sea water mantle by evaporation and distillation in preperation for the rest of creation which would be dependant of fresh water. Creation of rainwater is a continual process of creation by evaporation of seawater where the harmful elements (sodium chlorate, etc) are left behind. Since the curse of the sentence of death, the word of God delivered by His Spirit (the Holy Spirit) has been given to specific men and women (II Peter 1 v 21) in order to seperate them and their fellows in heart and mind by spiritual 'distillation' (removal of impurities) from the 'brackish waters' of the enmity which rules every man and woman (2 Timothy 3 v 16-17), to bring to pass His greater creation - a world populated by righteous people (Isaiah 65 v 17-25). The spirit of God in this latter work is always referred to in the Bible as the 'Holy Ghost' which simply is the 'Holy Spirit'. God created the water molecule and the continium of molecules that make up 'water' as we know it and in it's purest distilled form (rainwater) is what God created for our use, but added to that pureness are other elements that are foreign to man thus making it undrinkable (stagnant water, human and animal effluent, and rotting vegitation, for example). However, there are other additives that God has put in pure water by action of the 'running water' through the earth that are beneficial (calcium, magnesium, sodium etc) but there are also many additives that make it undrinkable added by man (pollutants, sweeteners, etc). In like manner the word of God is pure, but without the addition of the 'running water' action of the Holy Spirit in enlightenemnt to move us to sanctification, the word of God remains just that - a pleasant and soothing word as Ezekiel's listeners found (Ezekiel 33 v 32) - like a refreshing drink but with no long term effect. Like natural water, many contaminants have been added to the interpretation of the word of God, some intended to 'soften' it's message, some to 'harden' it (Revelation 22 v 17-19) and some to discredit it's truth, so as we a very careful what water we drink, likewise we have to be even more careful what 'water' of the word of God, as John warned (1 John 4 v 1-3). As there is more water on the face of the earth and under it than there is dry land (most of which is undrinkable salty, brackish or contaminated) so likewise the written and spoken word of God is spread across the face of the earth but most of which will not direct the imbiber to salvation in that it is not 'quickened' by the Holy Spirit as Paul wrote, "For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:" (I Peter 3 v 18). For water to be drinkable it must be evaporated from seawater via the clouds (as God created on the 2nd day - Genesis 1 v 6-8) and distilled as rain or dew.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Of this distilled water God said, "My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass:" Deuteronomy 32 v 2) and of the response of mankind in general to that pure water of the word of God, God also said, "Seemeth it a small thing unto you to have eaten up the good pasture, but ye must tread down with your feet the residue of your pastures? and to have drunk of the deep waters, but ye must foul the residue with your feet? And as for my flock, they eat that which ye have trodden with your feet; and they drink that which ye have fouled with your feet." (Ezekiel 34 v 18-19). When rain falls it filters through the soil and rocks picking up minerals in sufficient quantities as created by God to add life-giving trace elements for all living things (calcium, magnesium, sodium etc), so likewise God purposed that His son - who would become the saviour of mankind - would drink copiously of the pure water of God's word and add life-giving elements of faith, compassion, love, truth, honesty (Galatians 5 v 18-23) to that word for others to imbibe and gain salvation through him. God taught Israel - with the water out of the rock - what Jesus came to do, as Jesus reassured the disciples shortly before his death when the hope of the covenant was made sure, "Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works." John 14 v 10, and in prayer to God whose purpose it is, "For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me." (John 17 v 8). There were two occasions where water was provided out of rock. The first was shortly after Israel entered the wilderness and Israel and their herds were thirsty, Moses was told to "smite" the rock with the staff with which he used when the waters of the Red Sea were parted, and water would come forth (Exodus 17 v 6). In the second occasion, God told Moses to "speak" to the rock and water would come out (Numbers 20 v 8). God showed that for people to have a renewed and lively hope in the promises of His covenant, ‘water’ is necessary for re-hydration of naturally 'dehydrating' faith due to the continual activity of the enmity within us, and is made possible by the humiliating death of a publicly despised and rejected righteous man who was smitten both literally and figuratively (Isaiah 53, Psalm 143 v 3, Matthew 27 v 30). It is by his righteous blood - irrevocably linked with the water of the Holy Spirit inspired word - that we are washed from our sins as was witnessed at his crucifixion, "But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water." (John 19 v 34) and John confirmed "And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one." (1 John 5 v 8) and "This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth." (I John 5 v 6). Jesus washed the feet of his disciples with water just before his crucifixion “Peter saith unto him, Thou shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me” John 13 v 5-14). The second time water was brought forth from the rock (Numbers 20 v 8) Moses was told to speak to the rock, effectively to ask for life-giving water, so likewise the re-hydration (renewing) of our faith and the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God subsequent cleansing of our character is dependent on the sincerity and persistence of our asking for the gift of the Holy Spirit (as a thirsty person would crave for water) to enlighten our eyes from His word through the Lord Jesus Christ as Jesus taught, “And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you” (Luke 11 v 9), and to the Gentile woman, “But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life” (John 4 v 14), and of the gift of the Holy Spirit for spiritual cleansing alone Jesus taught, “He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified” (John 7 v 39), and of the giving of the gift of that everlasting ‘water’, “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you” (John 14 v 26), and of our subsequent washing, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost. That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life” (Titus 3 v 4-6). This is the promise of the covenant of God to those who unreservedly acknowledge and repent from their sins with the sincere belief that there is no man or woman that does not sin, that there are no ‘good’ sins and no ‘bad’ sins, that all sin is sin and that all sin (however trivial it may appear to be because of the subtlety of the enmity) is punishable by death (Romans 6 v 23) apart from the mercy of God through Jesus Christ, and that no man or woman has any right to that mercy above their neighbour due to the acknowledged fact that God will have mercy on whom He will have mercy without respect of persons (Romans 9 v 15-18). There is a "sin not unto death" that John refers to and there is a "sin unto death" (1 John 5 v 16-17), the difference between to two is 1) denial of sin and presumption to sin - 'a sin unto death', and 2) acknowledgement of sin and repentance according to God's requirement - 'a sin not unto death' (Psalm 34 v 18), (Psalm 51 v 17) As all beverages are based on water with added flavouring according to taste, so likewise are the religious ‘spirits’ of the world, all of which are built upon imaginary 'superior' deities and life somewhere beyond the grave which are the 'flavourings' and intoxicating 'alcohol' that have been added to the pure water of the Holy Spirit word of God (Council of Nicea 325AD for example), because as naturally pure water it is tasteless to the flesh, so the simple word of God does not excite the palate of the flesh. Because of this, God advised all who ask for hope in the covenant of God unto salvation, “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world” (I John 4 v 1-3) God showed that by bread (manna) and water (of the rock) He would be manifest by His Holy Spirit in a mortal man (John 10 v 30) (John 17), who after death would be elevated to everlasting life in order for him (Jesus Christ) to be in and of Him (God) for ever, confirming the hope that many more would follow Jesus in God’s appointed time, Jesus said,

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also" (John 14 v 1-3) prophetically fulfilled in Jesus last message, the Revelation, "and they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth." (Revelation 5 v 9-10). When Jesus ascended to the right hand of God in heaven it also is written, "And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven." (Acts 1 v 9-11), (Psalm 110 v 14) (Acts 7 v 55-56). ********************* Chapter 33 The covenant of God in the crossing of Jordan An interpretation of the figure of the flow of the river Jordan is given in 'The first principles of truth'. It is recommended to be read first where it will be explained how that the river Jordan is used by God to illustrate the decline and descent of mankind from the snow-capped heights of Mount Hermon into the lifeless waste of the Dead Sea . God showed further details of His covenant as he led Israel out of the wilderness to the place of entry to the promised land that He had chosen. The timing and simple details are particularly for our assurance who live in these last days before the return of Jesus Christ, and for the fulfillment of the 'entry' into the Kingdom of God on earth for the resurrected faithful, who will be made saints (sanctified in character and body by the Holy Spirit) - in whom ’I AM’ will be fulfilled (John 17 v 20-26) (I Corinthians 15 v 23-28). It was harvest time in the late summer when God led them with the Ark of the Covenant to the banks of the river Jordan which dramatically overflows it’s banks at this time due to the snow melt of the Hermon range, “for Jordan overfloweth all his banks all the time of harvest” (Joshua 3 v 15). It was not by chance, nor was it an inconvenience that they should arrive at this time but was the hand of God demonstrating the practical outworking of His covenant. As Jordan is the type of the human race, flowing headlong to the grave, so the ‘swelling’ of Jordan describes a time when human nature will overrun its traditional 'banks' with self-achievement, inventions, innovations and knowledge resulting in a swelling with self assured pride and continuity.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Human nature has always swelled with the pride of personal achievements but there are two particular times when this pride is exaggerated and particularly pernicious, the first being the antitype of the second. The first was when Jesus manifested God in a mortal body and was delivered unto death by religious elders who were envious of him, that religious pride transferred and rose up in the populace of Israel rose to a zenith, typifying the second greater outburst of pride that will occur at the time when Jesus returns to the earth at the last day, again to be fuelled by religious elders of all sects and denominations. In both cases, there was - and will be - religious and political indignation that the government and spiritual authority of an 'unknown' righteous people will demand complete subjugation of all people to the king (Jesus) who was despised by man. 'Religious' pride will rise as that day approaches as a sign of its advent. The apostles told us of these last days, “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come” (II Timothy 3 v 1), and “Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts” (II Peter 3 v 3), and "Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God." (II Thessalonians 2), and “How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts” (Jude v 18), and “For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many” (Matthew 24 v 5), and “And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them” (Luke 21 v 8) Israel were told to follow the Ark of the Covenant by ‘about’ 2000 cubits and as the feet of the priests that carried the Ark touched the waters edge, the flow stopped (Joshua 3 v 4) and the priest bearing the Ark of the Covenant stood in the middle of the dry river bed until all the people had passed over. In the figure, stopping the flow of life to an eternal grave and making a way across to realisation of the promise of everlasting life. Jesus stopped that ‘flow’ by victory over the enmity within himself and according to the covenant of God received everlasting life after his resurrection from the grave. As the Ark did not enter into the promised land of the kingdom of God until all the congregation had crossed but stood in the path of the river, so according to the covenant of God, Jesus now waits at the right hand of God in heaven until the time appointed by God (when God decides that the last member has been prepared) as it is foretold in the Psalms, “The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool” (Psalm 110), (John 14 v 1-3). The distance between Jesus ‘stopping the waters’ (his victory over the flesh) and the time of crossing by the saints by their resurrection from the grave and then from mortality is prefigured in the distance of ‘about 2000 cubits’ as it is recorded, “Yet there shall be a space between you and it, about two thousand cubits by measure: come not near unto it, that ye may know the way by which ye must go: for ye have not passed this way heretofore” (Joshua 3 v 4). Thus a figure of one year for one cubit

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God assures us that Jesus will return to fulfil the promises of the covenant of God at ‘about’ that time - two thousand years after his resurrection - the day and year of which no man knows nor can know as Jesus said, “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father” (Mark 13 v 32). The journey of the children of Israel in the wilderness for 40 years teaches of the necessary life-time of spiritual growth from birth at baptism to sanctification of the character (I Peter 2 v 1-10), a period of probation in order to prepare worthiness for the mercy of God in forgiveness of all sins (Revelation 3 v 5) (Psalm 32 v 1) and elevation to everlasting life (I Corinthians 15 v 50-57) (I Thessalonians 4 v 15-17) to live on earth for ever (Revelation 2 v 7). ********************* Chapter 34 The Promised Land ‘flowing with milk and honey’ The land of Canaan west of the river Jordan was part of the land that God promised by covenant to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to be a possession for them and their seed for ever (Genesis 13 v 14–18; Genesis 17 v 1-10). In the fullness of the covenant of God a far greater land was promised to them (Genesis 15 v 18-21) which was confirmed in that two and a half tribes of the children of Israel had their inheritance on the east side of the river Jordan. The complete 'promised land' is described in its extremities by Ezekiel in his vision of the kingdom of God (Ezekiel 48). This land west of the river Jordan is the place chosen by God (the creator of all lands) as the area where the people that He chose would live and is described as the land ‘flowing with milk and honey’ according as God told Moses when He first commissioned him to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt, “And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites” (Exodus 3 v 8). As a land ‘flowing with milk and honey’ it was a land of verdant greenery, lush meadows, abundant flowers and exceptional fruit, a land of sunshine and showers, of natural springs of water and swift running brooks, a land of heat in summer and cold in winter and was described by God to Moses, “For the LORD thy God bringeth thee into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and depths that spring out of valleys and hills; A land of wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig trees, and pomegranates; a land of oil olive, and honey; A land wherein thou shalt eat bread without scarceness, thou shalt not lack any thing in it; a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills thou mayest dig brass” (Deuteronomy 8 v 6-14). Because this land was the choice of God, Israel were warned through Moses about their attitude to their custody of that land in order for them to remember that it was not theirs to trade with, but that it was the land of God as it is written, “The land shall not be sold for

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God ever: for the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me” (Leviticus 25 v 23). The covenant of God is that He will give this land to the children of Israel forever because of the fidelity of the faith of Abraham in a world of idolatry (Deuteronomy 7 v 7-8). This inheritance has not been fulfilled to this day even though Israel now live in the same land - they are there as a witness to the existence of God and His purpose (Isaiah 43 v 9-12; Jeremiah 31 v 10), as a prefigurement of the fulfillment of those prophecies (Ezekiel 11 v 17) and as a herald of the time that will come when Jesus Christ returns to the earth (Luke 21 v 29-32) to establish the government of God across the whole earth (Isaiah 9 v 6-7). At that time the natural seed of Abraham will inherit the land bounded by the Mediterranean Sea on the west and Persian Gulf on the east, by the river Euphrates in the north and the Red Sea on the south as an everlasting inheritance, and the few mortal Gentiles remaining after the judgments of God will inhabit the rest of the earth. The record of the 'land' described in the Holy Bible as ‘flowing with milk and honey’ up to the time Israel crossed Jordan shows that it was inhabited by God-less nations and is an allegory of the naturally degenerate mind and heart (the soul) of all men and women. It is written that the 'eyes of the Lord are always upon' the land of the promises - the land then known as Canaan (Deuteronomy 11 v 12), and it was to this land that God led Abraham when he left Ur of the Chaldeas, a land of rich pastures and fruitfulness. Following the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah in the bordering valley of Jordan (Genesis 19) the 'infection' of human depravity rampant in those cities spread to the whole of the land of Canaan during the intervening years as is described in (Leviticus 18). It was the rightful work of God to destroy and remove that degeneracy from the land He cared for and replace it's depraved inhabitants with a people who bore His name and were under His Law. That people was Israel who were the instruments in His hand. To understand the allegory it is necessary to remember that God created man in the beginning as 'very good' (in body and mind) and placed him in a verdant and fruitful garden - the Garden of Eden, but because of sin Adam sank into immorality and was rightly driven out of that Garden. Since then mankind has sank further in the bottomless pit of immorality and is exemplified in the seven God-less nations that inhabited Canaan (Deuteronomy 7 v 1). In the allegory, these seven nations represent the enmity within each man and woman (Proverbs 6 v 16-19) whose temptations are to be driven out of the heart and mind (the soul) and destroyed by all who God calls to bear His name God and that of Christ Jesus. The mental struggle against temptation and selfish satisfaction is not in one great battle of 'being saved', but is a lifetime process of many battles after the example that God set in Israel in their war with the inhabitants (Deuteronomy 7 v 22). There are many battles in the war of overcoming the enmity in order to restore our heart to the 'fruitful garden' - 'flowing with milk and honey' that God created, but there is only one war and that war was won by Jesus Christ alone who was prefigured by a lesser but important warrior of the Lord - Joshua (Hebrew for Jesus). God taught in the allegory that the warfare against the tempter (our nature) is to be little by little and must be accomplished during our mortal life before the eternal inheritance of the body can begin - by which we can understand what Paul later taught, that by baptism we are 'translated into the kingdom of His dear Son' (Colossians 1 v 12-14), that is, living in

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God a mortal body and human existence but mentally and spiritually under the law of God and Christ - as though we were in the 'promised land'. The battles against our nature are to be fought in the name of the Lord by obedience to His word as was Israel were instructed (Deuteronomy 7 v 1-11) and (9 v 1-6), (Exodus 23 v 20-25), and as Paul confirmed (I Corinthians 9 v 7), (II Corinthians 10 v 3-5), (Ephesians 6 v 11-18). This is the way of the covenant of God, the preparation of the heart and mind for an eternal inheritance - there is no instant salvation, nor os the kingdom of God anywhere else but on earth in the future. While many thousands of the children if Israel came out of Egypt, only two of them (Joshua and Caleb) actually entered the promised land to illustrate the selectivity of the choice of God that He will make as to who He will allow to enter into His everlasting kingdom, a truth which Jesus endorsed, “For many are called, but few are chosen” (Matthew 22 v 14) and as Moses was told by God, “For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion” (Romans 9 v 15). Although Moses and other unnamed members did not physically enter the land, but died in the wilderness as a witness to the frail mortality of mankind and the sanctity of the immortal power of God, many will be raised from the grave to enter the everlasting kingdom of God on earth as saints when Jesus returns from the right hand of God in heaven. This was because, when these were physically in the literal wilderness, the ‘sight’ of their faith - the forefront of their mind - the focus of their heart in the everlasting covenant of God was firmly translated into the (as then unseen) ‘Promised Land’ of the everlasting kingdom of God on earth prefigured by the land of Canaan. These few in Israel were simultaneously traversing two journeys, one a literal one to the land of Canaan and secondly a spiritual journey to the fulfillment of the covenant. Because of this faith God allowed Moses to physically see the land where his mind had been set before he died as a prelude to the greater fulfillment, “And the LORD said unto him, This is the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying, I will give it unto thy seed: I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go over thither” (Deuteronomy 34 v 4), because the next thing Moses will be conscious of will be the glorified land in the kingdom of God. The same covenant of God is alive today, and the same response to that covenant is open to all men and women, and the same selectiveness by God will apply when the time of the entry to the kingdom of God on earth comes. That kingdom will be different from all other kingdoms and empires in that it will be ruled solely by the law of God which will be rigorously applied by one king Jesus Christ (Micah 4 v 1-4; Revelation 20 v 1-3). That time has not yet come, but in preparation of the ruler ship of the kingdom of God by the law of God in Christ in all the earth our hearts and minds are to be ruled now by the spirit of that same law (Colossians 1 v 13). The scripture shows that only those whose hearts, minds, characters, souls and lives have already been under the kingdom and ruler ship of the law of God by faith in Christ while in the spiritual wilderness of their mortal state (John 17 v 16; John 18 v 36; I John 2 v 15-17) will have their bodies changed from mortality to immortality (I Corinthians 15), because their minds were so set upon the kingdom of God (Hebrews 11 v 13-16) that they were effectively living there as it’s citizens.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God This will be seen in their manner of life in submission to the laws of the natural citizenship in the country of their mortal existence and in their submission to its judgments (the natural citizenship; Romans 13). It will be seen in their obedience to the law of God in Christ while in their natural existence (their spiritual citizenship; Philippians 3 v 20) and in their submission by repentance to the judgment of God through obedience to His word in the conscience, and by circumstances brought about as a result of that obedience. Paul wrote of the work of God and the response to that work in preparing for the kingdom, “Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son” (Colossians 1 v 13) which clearly means the spirit, character, soul and manner of life are ‘translated’ into the kingdom of God by obedience to the absolute ruler ship of the word of God while in the physical mortal body. Therefore to live within the bounty of the promises of the covenant of God it is essential to live by faith, based upon hope, founded upon trust in God as did Abraham of whom it is written, “Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be” (Romans 4 v 18), and for all believers it is written, “For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it” (Romans 8 v 24-25). The same faith in the hope of the bounty of the promise of the covenant of God was required of Israel in the wilderness concerning the promised land as a land ‘flowing with milk and honey’. That kingdom is yet to come on this earth, but unless we are under the ruler ship of the kingdom of God now in all our life we can never hope to be selected to enter the greater 'promised land' which will flow with ‘milk and honey’ (figures of the word of God and its judgments) for ever. Jesus said that in addition to the promise of the literal kingdom of God the herat and mind must first be ruled by the law of Christ, “Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17 v 21). If it is not within us now (i.e. submission to the ruler ship of God), we will never be when it actually comes (Matthew 7 v 13-23). If the universal land of the Kingdom of God on earth is to be a literal world of abundant fruitfulness due to the blessing of God through the unopposed administration of His law (as prefigured in the land of Canaan as then was Deuteronomy 30 v 1-16) and we hope to be in that worldwide land, then our manner of life by faith must be a spiritual life ‘flowing with the milk and honey’ of the fruits of the Holy Spirit embodied in the covenant of God as was demonstrated by Jesus Christ of whom it was prophesied would allegorically eat a spiritual diet of butter and honey, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good” (Isaiah 7 v 14-15). As a result of this spiritual diet he would show the fruits of the Holy Spirit - without the weeds of the enmity - in a mortal body as it is written, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law” (Galatians 5 v 23-24). Therefore the state of our heart and mind (according to the same covenant of God) must also be one of ‘flowing with

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God milk and honey’ in order to form the fruits of the Holy Spirit in our way of life and demonstrate the power of the name of God in our character (Exodus 34 v 6). God has preserved the record of the verdant fruitfulness of promised land of Canaan (Numbers 13 v 20-23), the debasement of its natural inhabitants (Leviticus 18) and the conquest of that land of Canaan by the power of God (Deuteronomy 7 v 1; Joshua 6) to be used as a figure of what He requires of all those who have the embrace the hope of the promises by repenting through baptism to develop characters of spiritual fruitfulness by displacement and destruction of the effects of the enmity within our own nature by the power of the Holy Spirit which is given by gift in the promises of His covenant through Jesus Christ (John 14 v 16 & 26; John 15 v 26; John 16 v 7). The intents of our heart and the thoughts of our minds are to become like a fruitful garden - rid of weeds and thorns - as the soul of Jesus became, as it is written of him, “I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved” (Song of Solomon 5 v 1) so that Jesus can rejoice and say of his bride (the saints) to His Father “A garden inclosed is my sister, my spouse; a spring shut up, a fountain sealed. Thy plants are an orchard of pomegranates, with pleasant fruits; camphire, with spikenard, Spikenard and saffron; calamus and cinnamon, with all trees of frankincense; myrrh and aloes, with all the chief spices: A fountain of gardens, a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon” (Song of Solomon 4:12-16). With this figure of the garden of the Lord, Jesus spoke of the fruits of the life as the works that are done, “Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them” (Matthew 7 v 1520). Our heart and mind were created to be like a garden flowing with the milk and honey of the word of God, but the lie of the serpent (perpetuated through the enmity) corrupted our nature in the same way that the natural indigenous inhabitants of Canaan corrupted the promised land, and as it was then - so it is now - only by the power of the Holy Spirit can the usurping effects of the enmity residing within us be driven out and our hearts and minds restored to a garden full of the fruits of the Lord. This transformation of character is to be done in the naturally barren wilderness of mortality (due to the curse of God) as Paul wrote, “For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us” (II Corinthians 4 v 6-7). ********************* Chapter 35 The covenant of God in the conquest of the Promised Land God created us with hearts, minds and emotions which were pure and unadulterated without any shadow of rebellion against His work so that our characters could be as a 'garden' of spiritual fruit and delight for His pleasure and this state was epitomised in the creation of the Garden of Eden where Adam and Eve were placed (Genesis 2 v 8).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God However, the serpent who had the power of reason and speech, generated seeds of rebellion which acted as 'weeds' and 'thorns' that would eventually spoil that peaceful haven of harmony with God. Adam and Eve accepted those 'seeds' of rebellion and allowed them to germinate in the fertile 'soil' of their hearts to spring up into works and fruits of disobedience (Matthew 13 v 4 & 19). As God cursed mankind with the enmity for his transgression, so He also cursed the ground because of the sin of man (Genesis 3 v 17) in order for it to be a continual reminder to following generations that the 'garden' of soul of mankind was corrupted by the 'weeds' and 'thorns' of sin. The land of Canaan was a physically beautiful and unspoilt garden (similar to the Garden of Eden) through which Abraham, Isaac and Jacob wandered and in which they sojourned, but as in the decadent descent of Adam in the beginning, so the wickedness of Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 19 v 4-8) spread throughout the land, and the inhabitants defiled the beauty of the land with idolatry, decadence and immorality, for which reason God chose to drive them out and supplant them with a people He had chosen for Himself and who had entered into His covenant as was witnessed in the warning of God, “Defile not ye yourselves in any of these things: for in all these the nations are defiled which I cast out before you: And the land is defiled: therefore I do visit the iniquity thereof upon it, and the land itself vomiteth out her inhabitants. (For all these abominations have the men of the land done, which were before you, and the land is defiled;)” (Leviticus 18), as a result of which God declared His will, “When the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and hath cast out many nations before thee, the Hittites, and the Girgashites, and the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than thou” (Deuteronomy 7). We also were born with the innocence of a heart like a 'garden' of untarnished by sin ready to flourish to the glory of God with fruits of obedience and praise to him - but like the indigenous inhabitants of the land of Canaan, our weakness to resist the effects of the enmity mar our character by sin and so the 'garden' of the Lord intended in our soul is defiled. According to the covenant of God in Christ Jesus, that spiritual 'garden' of delights can be renewed by baptism in water, but it will be found that the 'weeds' of sin and transgressional 'thorns' of the enmity through our own weakness will reappear and that if they are allowed to remain will became as snares and traps to our emerging character (the 'new man' in Christ, II Corinthians 5 v 17) just as God said the inhabitants of the promised land would do to Israel if they did not overcome them, “But if ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you; then it shall come to pass, that those which ye let remain of them shall be pricks in your eyes, and thorns in your sides, and shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell” (Numbers 33 v 55). Every man and woman is allegorically journeying in the wilderness of the 'world' of their mortal nature from birth to death via maturity, but the hope of the promise of the covenant of God is that after baptism by water (strictly according to the teaching of Jesus and the Apostles) the mind and heart of the individual are translated by faith into the kingdom of God (prefigured the Promised Land) and this is the first leap of love and elation of joy (Colossians 1 v 2-13). But because of our nature, it will soon

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God be acknowledged that what should be the garden of the Lord (the kingdom of God) in our heart is in fact still inhabited by temptation and sin, therefore a warfare is inevitable to cast out and destroy those original inhabitants of our soul who have returned by sin, and to re-establish - as an inheritance - a fixed abiding place for law of God in Christ, in order for that law to become the dominating government of our heart. This is what is meant by entering into the covenant of God by baptism of faith, so that when the time comes for entry into the kingdom of God after resurrection from the dead (about 2000 years after Christ) our minds, hearts, souls, characters, and manner of lives are already under the rulership of God and what then needs to be done by God is the final washing away of our remaining sinfulness (including sins unknown to us but known to God; Psalm 19 v 7-14) by forgiveness through resurrection to life immortality on earth (I Corinthians 15 v 50-57) (I Thessalonians 4 v 15-18) (Revelation 7). After this transformation the saints will assist Jesus in the physical cleansing of wickedness from the earth as it is foretold, “To execute upon them the judgment written: this honour have all his saints. Praise ye the LORD” (Psalm 149). They will then enter into the everlasting inheritance of the earth under the kingship of Christ (Isaiah 9 v 6-7 & 11 v 1-9) (Micah 4 v 1-7). The preparation for this honour embodied in the covenant of God is prefigured in the conquest of the land of Canaan and the allocating of the lots of the inheritance of the Children of Israel by God (Deuteronomy 18 v 9-12) where in the analogy, every word of God is to settle and rule in every corner of our heart. Then the heart will be as the 'garden' of the Lord in part fulfillment of the word of God, “And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not” (Isaiah 58 v 11). Then will the heart be prepared for meeting with the Lord Jesus Christ when he returns to the earth who said prophetically of the collective body of the saints, “A garden inclosed is my sister, my spouse; a spring shut up, a fountain sealed. I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved” (Song of Solomon 4 v 12 & 5 v 1) and as a garden is one they two will become one (Song of Solomon 4 v 9-15) - each a compliment of the other. However, true to the obstinacy of the enmity, the indigenous inhabitants of Jericho implacably resisted the advance of the children of Israel for which God destroyed the city as Israel followed God's instructions (Joshua 6), by which act the power of the Holy Spirit was demonstrated in overcoming the enmity - provided God's instructions are faithfully followed. God used Jericho as a type of the stony and impenetrable hardness of the enmity, an implacable foe of the authority of God, and its dismantling and destruction as a type of the victory that Jesus Christ would have over the opposition of the enmity within the 'ground' of his character as he acknowledged, “When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils” (Luke 11 v 21-22) where the strong man is human nature and the stronger man is the Christ.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The covenant of God was with the children of Israel and they had entered into that covenant by solemn vow of fidelity to His law and so were instructed to make no covenant with the inhabitants of the land (Deuteronomy 7 v 2 & 9), but as a reminder to all of how easy it is to fail, they were deceived by the local people and made a covenant with them (Joshua 9) thus failing to drive out all the inhabitants of the land who later became a source of sin unto them. Therefore God has shown the way of preparation to being incorporated into His everlasting covenant as being a continuous fight against the ‘seven nations’ of the enmity (the complete spectrum of human weakness and duplicity) within every man and woman if there is to be a hope of entering the kingdom of God yet to come. If the war within the character cannot be won then there can never be participation in the war to come to rid the earth of evil (I Peter 2 v 11) (II Corinthians 10 v 4-6) (II Timothy 2 v 3-5). The covenant of God never rests with the 'masses' or large groups of people, because God is calling individuals to His covenant, who collectively over 6000 years will make one people. This important aspect of the purpose of God in His covenant was taught in the victory over the Midianites by Gideon and only 300 men (Judges 7). Thirty two thousand men were gathered to fight against Midian, but only 300 were selected for the battle who had as weapons only a light in an earthen vessel in one hand and a trumpet in the other. Their battle cry was 'the sword of the LORD, and of Gideon', they blasted on the trumpets and break the vessels to reveal the lights as they thinly surrounded the enemy camp in the darkness of night. Midian panicked and fled, killing each other on the way. God taught that by one man (Jesus Christ) and a relatively few companions compared to the many called (Matthew 7 v 14, & 22 v 14) the enmity would be vanquished by the light of the word of God in mortal bodies (II Corinthians 4 v 7) who by sacrifice would 'break' their mortal strength (Psalm 31 v 12 & 34 v 18) (Hosea 10 v 12) in order for the light to shine (Matthew 5 v 14-16) and would by actions, declare the word of God with the clarity of a trumpet call (I Peter 2 v 12) and shout for the glory of God and Christ (I John 5 v 1-10) who one day will shout collectively as one, "Alleluia, the Lord God omnipotent reigneth" (Revelation 19 v 1-9). ********************* Chapter 36 The covenant of God through David, teaching of Jesus God has purposed from the beginning that the man He made in His image and likeness in body and in character would be His beloved son and would not only be the redeemer and savior of the family of God his Father, but would be rewarded with universal kingship (Psalm 2). During the life of Samuel, God revealed further detail of the outworking of His covenant and showed that it is He alone who will choose with whom to make His covenant and is never influenced by man or woman however upright they appear to be. Samuel was a faithful man but he was taught that mans' popular choice of a king for Israel was not the choice of God. Samuel was told to anoint a new king to replace the 'popular' choice king and doing so was shown that the least significant of the sons of Jesse would be the one that God selected to be king

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God over Israel, as a foreshadowing of the greater king that should come. God told Samuel after his inspection of all the elder candidate brothers, “Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart” (II Samuel 16 v 7). By this way God taught that the greater son of God (Jesus Christ) would be a despised and rejected man, a man of inconsequence in the opinions of his fellows, which was fulfilled when Jesus came to his people and Nathaniel was made to learn who God chooses when he asked of the possibility that the Messiah could come from Nazareth, “Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?” (John 1 v 46) (John 7 v 25-27). The prophet Isaiah had foretold, “For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him” (Isaiah 53). If therefore the leader and king of the family of God is insignificant by the standards of the flesh then his subjects the future saints will be no different (John 13 v 16). God chose David because He saw in him a heart that was willing to be privately and publicly humbled and that could be made as compassionately soft and tender as the heart of God is, as Paul later wrote of God, “he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will” (Acts 13 v 22). In the greater fulfillment, God said of Jesus "And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." (Matthew 3 v 17) and "Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles." (Matthew 12 v 18). By choosing David over his elder brothers, God revealed greater details of His purpose contained in His covenant. To teach of these further details of the work of the greater son of God in leading a people back to peace with Him, God saw in David qualities that He expected as a foreshadowing of the work of His greater son. David was skilled shepherd - trusted to keep his fathers flock at a tender age of 17 years - he was expert in confrontation and vanquishing of wild predators seeking to predate his fathers flock (I Samuel 16 v 11); I Samuel 17 v 34-37). In this he was in character the antitype of the greater son of God who would be a mature but of tender years 'shepherd' who was able to withstand and overcome the ultimate predator - Satan (human nature, I Peter 5 v 8) and to lead and feed a flock of people to God as a responsible and dependable firstborn son. He did not recoil from paying the ultimate price of their redemption as Jesus later testified, “I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep” (John 10 v 11). Many men have given their lives as martyrs in the name of religion, but in the purpose of the covenant of God (as revealed in the curse on the serpent, Genesis 3 v 15) a physical death alone is not what God requires. God required the death of the ‘giant’ of the enmity (within the heart and mind) first, and then the physical death - as a result of that victory over the ‘giant’, which when this was once done, could not be repeated. No man or woman has been able to do that except Jesus Christ due to the fact that all other have allowed the ‘giant’ of their own nature (the enmity) to prevail at some time. To illustrate this teaching God chose David (although

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God sinful) to be a type and a figure of a man who alone would have the victory over his enemy, the enemy of God, the devil and Satan. David did sin grievously in his life as can be understood from most of the Psalms, but God saw in him a righteous contrition after frail impetuosity that had no equal, and he was inspired to write his confessions in the Psalms as a prediction of the magnitude of the character of Jesus, that even though Jesus never sinned he took the sins of others (including David's') upon himself as a guilty representative of all contrite sinners (Isaiah 53 v 4-9) (I Peter 2 v 21-25). Goliath was a giant of the Philistines who defied the armies of Israel challenging them to an individual hand-to-hand battle to decide who the ruler would be - the God of Israel or the gods of the Philistines (I Samuel 17 v 1-16). All the men in Israel failed to rise up to the challenge of this blasphemous giant of a man to illustrate the weakness of the race of mankind to challenge the greatest 'giant' of all time - the enmity within each of us. David ('a stripling') was caused by circumstance to enter the camp (to the contempt of his brethren) and on hearing of the challenge, responded in a jealous zeal for the honour of God and volunteered to engage this enemy in battle, thus setting the type for the coming of Jesus Christ who willingly stood in the breach made by the enmity with it’s contemptible challenge of the authority of the word of God with a zeal that outshone David's jealousy for God. Jesus used none of the armour of the mind of the flesh (debates, envyings, wraths, strifes, backbitings, whisperings, swellings, tumults, II Corinthians 12 v 20) even as David despised the armour that Saul gave him and testified of the future work of the Lord Jesus Christ, “Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied” (I Samuel 17-45). Thus David foretold the weaponry of the greater son of God - through whom the covenant of God would be fulfilled - by choosing five smooth stones of the brook to slay the enemy in the head, which in the figure the stones represent the weighty and substantial commands of God polished by the Holy Spirit without cracks, ambiguities or imperfections (Psalm 19 v 7-11). These weighty words of God were comprehensively used by Jesus to slay the enmity in the head (his mind) as foreshadowed by the skill of David with the accurate and singular slinging of a stone (I Samuel 17 v 49; Matthew 4 v 4, 7 & 10). As a result of his victory over Goliath, David came to the notice of Saul the existing king who began to hate him without a cause (Psalm 69 v 4); (John 15 v 25) except that he realised that God had rejected him from being king and that David was to be the next king. Saul pursued him in a jealous rage for many years in an attempt to kill him until such time that David was effectively dead, having been driven out of his homeland as a fugitive. Thus was foreshadowed the hatred and mindless pursuit of those who envied Jesus with a bitter hatred because of his promised inheritance of the kingship of Israel through the covenant of God and who said, “Away with him, away with him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Caesar” (John 19 v 15). David not only slew Goliath but liberated Israel from domination of the Philistines to become a God-fearing nation without idolatry, as an antitype of his greater son Jesus Christ who would deliver the people God has called to be His family (Jew and Gentile) from dominion of the enmity (Ephesians 2 v 14-16). So zealous was David

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God for he and Israel to worship God that he proposed to build a temple where God could dwell among them in spirit. He was told that because of his warrior past he could not but that his son would, "And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men: But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee. And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever" (II Samuel 7). In measure this was temporarily fulfilled in Solomon but the promise of the covenant of God spoke of a far greater son of David would would build a house of people in whom God would dwell for ever, a confirmation and enlargement of the same promise given to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the 'house' that the apostles referred to (II Corinthians 5 v 1-5) (I Peter 2 v 1-5) (I Corinthians 6 v 19-20) (II Corinthians 6 v 16) (Ephesians 2 v 19-21). ********************* Chapter 37 The covenant of God through David, teaching of those needing redemption David delivered Israel from the oppressive rule of the Philistines, but he was not the promised ‘greater’ son of God (the Prophet) foretold by God through Moses who should redeem a people from the grave (Deuteronomy 18 v 15-22). He was however one of the people who realised their need to be saved and who are to be redeemed from eternal death and was described by God as 'a man after my own heart' (Acts 13 v 22). God has recorded details of David's life to be as a representation of all those who God calls to have the hope in the promises of the covenant of God, and showed through David His extraordinary compassion and abundant mercy as a way teaching the full meaning of the power of the name of God which was to be seen in the greater son of God (I AM, God to be manifest in a mortal man). The name of God means mercy, grace, long suffering, goodness and truth (Exodus 34 v 6-7) summarised as daily compassion and kindness on the grateful and ungrateful, and in addition, forgiveness and eternal life on the repentant (Luke 6 v 35). As the representative of all those who vow to serve God by faith through circumcision (before Christ) and by faith through baptism (after Christ) - David sinned, and four of those sins were grievous (murder and adultery (II Samuel 11), idolatry (worship of self) and blasphemy (abuse of the power God gave him) (II Samuel 24), but by his sins - and his repentance from those sins - God was able to show every man and woman for the following 4000 years that the compassion and forgiveness of God (bound within His covenant) is beyond our comprehension and that it was the same goodness that was seen in Jesus Christ (‘I AM’, God manifest in a mortal body) who when dying in agony on the cross, asked the forgiveness of those who killed him, “Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots” (Luke 23 v 34).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The enmity (human nature) will tempt us to consider that David was not representative of us because his sins were indeed grievous sins (where ours are less so), but the enmity within us is always the deceiver (Jeremiah 17 v 9-10), because it prompts us to conveniently forget that all sin is sin and all sin carries the sentence of eternal death (Romans 6 v 23) and to forget that there are no good sins and bad sins, and to fail to remember that there is no categorisation of sin (from mild to strong), for whether we sin a 'childlike' sin or a malicious premeditated felony the sentence is the same, but what is important is the repentance of the sinner as John later explained, there is a sin (no repentance) unto death and a sin (repentance) not unto death (1 John 5 v 16-18). All sins are forgiven by God provided there is repentance after the manner of our ‘representative-in-sin’ - David. When David was told of his sin and acknowledged his error, he was physically distraught to the point of illness, he knew he could not undo his sin or forget it (II Samuel 12 v 23), so he threw his hope in the mercy of God (II Samuel 24 v 14 & 17) who was entreated of Him, as He will be of all those who put themselves under David as their senior ‘representative-in-sin’ and confess to God in their spirit that all their sin is against God, “Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest” (Psalm 51). These sins, Jesus took upon himself in the compassion of God (I AM) as Isaiah wrote, “Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53 v 4-5), and “For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls” (II Peter 2 v 21-25). This is the promise of the covenant of God to those who abide by the conditions that God has set. God revealed details by David of the outworking of the covenant of God in those who join themselves to God in that covenant by solemn vow of obedience with hope of eternal salvation from the grave, and David wrote these revelations in the Psalms which carry forward prophetically as the Spirit of Jesus, many of which show that although he was without sin yet he took the guilt of the responsibility of the sins of his friends upon himself and bore their shame as though they were his own (Psalm 22, 32, 36, 51 et al). He did not distance himself from them but though he had not sinned he acknowledged that he was of sinful nature and naturally unclean in the eyes of God. By reading the Psalms the innermost feelings of Jesus including the bearing of the guilt of the sins of his fellows can be understood, from his love and devotion to God and to the hatred of the enmity, but there is one Psalm out of the one hundred and fifty Psalms that stands out as singular and particular in that it can only refer to one man who never transgressed any command of God.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God It is a Psalm wherein faultless devotion to God is recorded and in which 175 out of 176 verses refer to some aspect of the word of God (testimonies, commandments, law, statutes, precepts, judgments, word, his ways, ordinances) as a fulfillment of what was later shown to identify Jesus Christ as 'the word made flesh' (John 1 v 6-14). This Psalm written by David through inspiration from God as an assurance to all who hope for salvation in the covenant of God and whose hope and salvation depended upon one man (who was as then yet to come), it is an anthology of the heart and mind of Jesus Christ, the secret musings of his heart, the catalogue of thoughts that delivered him from the wiles of his nature (the enmity), it is in fact the A-Z of the character of Christ - it being divided into the 20 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. It is Psalm 119. From that foundation Psalm the 'Songs of degrees' (ascent) begin which culminate in the fulfillment of the hope of the covenant - everlasting life (Psalms 133 & 134), they written and collated upon the foundation of Psalm 119 for those who desire to ascend to the sanctity required in those upon whom everlasting life on earth will be bestowed, as David sang "Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation." (Psalm 24) ********************* Chapter 38 The covenant of God through David, teaching of Jesus and those he will redeem God created the earth so that He could have a dwelling place where He could enjoy the pleasure of the things that He had created - with mankind (who He created in His own image and likeness) as the dominant part of that handiwork (Genesis 1 v 26-28; Psalm 8; Revelation 4 v 11). The covenant of God affirms that that purpose has not been forgotten due to the rebellion of man, but will certainly be fulfilled in the time God has set and is referred to as His ‘new’ creation (Isaiah 65 v 17-18) where God will have a place to dwell among the works of His hands on earth after Jesus Christ returns as revealed in the vision of John in the Revelation, “And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God” (Revelation 21 v 3). That people are the family of God who will be redeemed from an otherwise eternal grave by Jesus Christ through resurrection from the dead and by transformation to immortality, who will have been prepared by sanctification of the Holy Spirit in their mortal state by obedience to the will of God, and in each one has grown the longing that God would dwell among them, having repudiated the rulership of the enmity (human nature) within themselves, having hated their own uncleanness of spirit. As David was the ‘representative-in–sin’ so also is he the representative in hating his own fickle nature and replacing those ‘tents of wickedness’ (Psalm 84 v 10 - the effects of the enmity which pitch themselves without warning in the mind) with an insatiable desire that God would dwell with him and with His people as he wrote in the Psalms, “For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness” (Psalm 84). So strong was his desire that he planned to build a house dedicated to God where the Ark of the Covenant could rest permanently (and God - through Mercy Seat Exodus 25 v 10-22) and David is set as a representative-in-hope in having the desire that the Spirit of God through a redeemer (Christ) should dwell permanently in the hearts and minds of those who enter into the covenant of God by vow of baptism (circumcision before Christ), to the exclusion of the effects of the enmity as Paul expressed of the house of God, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” (I Corinthians 3 v 16), and of the effects of the enmity, “And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people” (II Corinthians 6 v 16). Despite his ardent desire, David was shown that he could not build a temple to God because of the blood that he had shed, but that God would raise up a son of His own out of the progeny of David who would build the house David so desired. The desire of David to build a physical structure for God to dwell in was a practical demonstration of his faith the God would dwell both physically within his people and within their hearts and minds according to His covenant of everlasting life given to his forefathers. Because of his fervent faith God revealed greater details of His covenant to David and said, “And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men: But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee. And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever” (II Samuel 7 v 12-16). God now confirmed that the 'Prophet' spoken of by Moses (Deuteronomy 18 v 15-23) the Redeemer would be a mortal man - ‘which shall proceed out of thy bowels’ - of whom God would be his father - ‘I will be his father, and he shall be my son’ and was this was fulfilled as is recorded in the Gospel records (Matthew 1, Luke 1 v 26-38; Luke 2; Luke 3). David was told that these events would be after his death - ‘And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers’ (Solomon his immediate successor ascended the throne before his death) - to which David responded, “for thou hast also spoken of thy servant's house for a great while to come” (II Chronicles 17 v 17). In fact Jesus was born some 1000 years later and the fulfillment of the promise of the finished house will be about 3000 years from the time of David. God made clear that the birth of this 'one' would not be by the natural will of man, but entirely by the power of God – ‘I will set up thy seed after thee’ which was fulfilled in

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Mary exactly as foretold, “And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1 v 35). The kingdom that this ‘greater’ son of David will inherit will be established by God and will last for ever on this earth – ‘I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever’ and ‘And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever’ (Psalm 2; Isaiah 9 v 6-7) - in accordance with the promises to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The promise of the covenant to David tells us that this ‘greater’ son will ‘build a house’ for the name of God and Luke recorded that Jesus committed himself to this work from an early age when he told his natural parents, “How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?” (Luke 2 v 42-51) where ‘my Father’s business’ means to build His house. John also recorded that Jesus spoke of his body as being the temple of God when he cast out the merchants of the enmity from the temple built by Herod, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. But he spake of the temple of his body” (John 2 v 13-22). Of this house of God, Paul uses the allegory of the human body and shows that there is a people whose bodies (hearts, minds and character) individually are the temple of God, and collectively will be the many members of the future composite body of Christ Jesus who is the head and leader of that body from whom the members of the body get their directions in the same way that a natural body is governed by the head, as it is written of Christ and his church, “And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence” (Colossians 1 v 13-20), and again, “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular” (I Corinthians 12 v 12-27), and again, “But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ. From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love” (Ephesians 4 v 13-16), and again, “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby: To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious, To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious” (I Peter 2 v 1-10). The promise of the covenant of God is that He will provide a savior for a people otherwise condemned to an eternal grave in whom God will dwell forever. These will be a people whom He is creating for His pleasure who willingly obey him by baptism in water and thereafter by continual baptism of the Holy Spirit, who refuse the temptations of the enmity within themselves (after the example of Jesus) and who repent when they fail (according to the example of David). To these Jesus confirmed the promise of the covenant just before he was crucified by which act he assured them of their hope “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14 v 1-3), where ‘mansions’ are abiding places. This was the faith of David and by the revelation of this covenant to him from God he continued his hope in salvation, and accordingly set himself to design and prepare the form and materials for a house that Solomon his son should build to the Glory of God to be as a type of the house of living people (I Chronicles 22) and this house is set as a representative-in-preparation of all who vow in baptism to obey God, to prepare their character to fit into the house of many people that Jesus will assemble for his Father when he returns - like a bride who has made herself ready for the groom on the day of their marriage as it is written, “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready” (Revelation 19 v 7). When Solomon built the house that David his father had designed and for which David had made ready all the materials, it is recorded that not a tool was heard in the assembly of the house, "And the house, when it was in building, was built of stone made ready before it was brought thither: so that there was neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron heard in the house, while it was in building." (I Kings 6 v 7). This teaches that the time for preparation to be included in that living house is now in our mortal existence - because there will be 'no tool heard' when Jesus assembles that house. Jesus warned of this limit of opportunity in the parable of the five wise virgins (Matthew 25 v 1-13). As a foreshadowing of this time yet to come, Solomon the son of David assembled the house that his father had prepared and reigned over a kingdom that enjoyed peace such that had not been experienced in Israel before or since. ********************* Chapter 39 The covenant of God through Solomon Solomon was the son of David that God chose to succeed him (I Chronicles 28 v 5) but he was not the son that God had promised to raise up in order to save His people from the ‘prison’ of an eternal grave. God did bless Solomon with peace, honour and wisdom to be a prefigurement of that ‘greater’ son and to be a type of the promised son of David (Jesus Christ). God gave Solomon peace that was unprecedented throughout his kingdom - a shadow of the peace of the kingdom of God to be inherited by the 'greater' son Jesus Christ, He gave Solomon extraordinary honour amongst all nations that was voluntary and in addition God gave him wisdom more than any man of his time (II Chronicles 1 v 10-12; II Chronicles 9 v 22-23) to be a type of what Jesus will receive in the kingdom of the promises of the covenant of God. Solomon was given wisdom to discriminate between truth and falsehood (I Kings 3 v 16-28) and to write proverbs and songs in abundance (I Kings 4 v 32), yet despite all this honour Solomon - by his own weakness - became the representative of those who allow the wiles of the enmity to replace the rulership of the word of God in his life. Referring to the 'greater' son who would be the redeemer in comparison to

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God himself he wrote, "Better is a poor and a wise child than an old and foolish king, who will no more be admonished." (Ecclesiastes 4 v 13) . God chose Solomon as a representative of what is required of those who respond to the covenant of God, his heart it was soft and tender, and his character was humble and contrite even though he was born to the honour of a prince in Israel and as such became a type of the ‘greater’ son who was to come and of all those who join themselves to him (II Chronicles 22 v 5; Isaiah 66 v 1-2). Because of his humility God gave Solomon a measure of divine wisdom above that any man or woman had received, as a prefigurement of the gift of divine wisdom that the ‘greater’ son would receive by a full measure of the Holy Spirit, and as a result the fame of Solomon spread far and wide encouraging monarchs and elders from distant lands to honour him with gifts, riches and praise. Thus God blessed Solomon as a further foreshadowing of the honour and praise that Jesus Christ will receive when he inherits the both throne of David and of the world for ever in the kingdom of God, “And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one” (Zechariah 14 v 9; Isaiah 9 v 16-7; Isaiah 60; Isaiah 8 v 12). By the wisdom that God gave to Solomon, greater details of the outworking of His covenant were revealed, details of what was required of those who enter into that covenant by vow of obedience and warnings of the dangers of the adversary the enmity (human nature) within mankind. He wrote of the enmity as a ‘strange woman’ (Proverbs 5 v 3-14) (Proverbs 7 v 6-23) and all her multitude of disguises, he wrote of those who embraced the conditions of the promises of the covenant of God as the ‘virtuous woman’ (Proverbs 31 v 10-31), he wrote of the submission to God that was required of the heart as a metaphor of the character and soul of the person, “My son, give me thine heart, and let thine eyes observe my ways” (Proverbs 23 v 26). He wrote of the vanity of mankind compared to the immortal power of the Almighty, “But if a man live many years, and rejoice in them all; yet let him remember the days of darkness; for they shall be many. All that cometh is vanity. Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth; and let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the sight of thine eyes: but know thou, that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment. Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them” (Ecclesiastes 11 v 8-9 & 12 v 1). But above all this God caused Solomon to describe the love of the covenant of God in a song of love, the love that binds the covenantee to the covenantor, that permanently bonds the saints to Jesus and Jesus to His Father, and they all in one, as Jesus prayer to his Father expressed (John 17) - the love of God (agape) not found naturally in mankind (Agape and phileo) The Song of Solomon is a dialogue between a man and a woman deeply in love but separated by time and distance, whose love grows stronger as the time of separation increases such that the intervention of death cannot quench that love (Song of Solomon 8 v 6-7). It is a song of love that passes beyond the horrors of the grave, through a resurrection from the dead and into the garden of immortality of the Lord (Song 5 v 1). It is a spontaneous unifying song of a despised singular man (Song 1 v 5 - black was the colour of the tents of a despised local people) and a singular virgin (who is made up of many members form many

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God generations - Song 1 v 7-8), a mutual musing of the hearts of a bridegroom and his bride who independently both pass through a long process of preparation for a marriage as God intended at the creation - that two should be one ("...and they shall be one flesh" Genesis 2 v 23-24). The song is an emotional expression of repetitively fleeting wisps of increasing attracting magnetism that continually draws a man and a maiden together irrespective of fashionable beauty, popular opinions or distractions from alterative contemporary suitors (Song 3 v 1-5 & 5 v 2-8). It is a song of love between two who have eyes only for each other (like the eyes of a dove Song 1 v 15) - despite the derision and incomprehension of their neighbours (Song 2 v 16). It is a song of the joys of the increasing gravitational attraction that two bodies experience when approaching the time of beautiful unity, like the gentle fall of a flower petal slowly accelerating toward the verdant grass (Song 2 v 1-3) or the oscillating path that a downy white feather of a dove as it gravitates to the earth (Song 2 v 14). It is the song of the incomprehensible migration of two hearts from the place of their natural sinful residence to the sanctified 'nest' of the origin of their characters before sin entered the world (Song 7 v 10-13), like the migration of a pair of swallows over thousands of miles from their summer home to the place of the nest of their birth (Psalm 84 v 3). It is the song of an unblemished man and a sanctified virgin who are besotted with each other with an infatuation beyond the comprehension of onlookers (Song 5 v 1). It is the story of a man preparing a house and a garden for his future bride without whom that house and garden would have no soul, and a song of the bride who in her simplicity will not be diverted from her goal of filling that role of the soul of his garden and home. It is the melody of a husband who will one day come to claim his bride and the song of a bride who will be patiently and trustingly waiting for his call, “My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land; The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away” (Song 2 v 10-13). It is the song of the love of God, agape (not phileo) that is embodied in the promises of the covenant of God, because that covenant was given to mankind with the same love (agape) that is expressed in the Song, and it is the same love that God has for those that enter into His covenant by the vow of baptism and grow into faithful covenantees in reciprocating that love by renewal of that vow each week according to the command of Christ Jesus the bridegroom. It is a song of the love of God manifest in His created children, "Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame". The seal is the word used when vaults of treasure or important contents are sealed with an inscribed seal indicating ownership and the intent to return and reclaim. Love is agape - the love is God and of God (I John 4) - a love for His children that extends beyond the grave and by which Jesus Christ was raised from the dead and because of which he died (John 15 v 13), a love to which all saints must aspire by traversing the agonies and longings of the journey of the Song (Song 5 v 8). God is jealous (Exodus 20 v 5 & 34 v 14) and Jesus took this jealousy to himself in order to honour his Father ( Mark 11 v 15-18) leaving an example for all those who enter into His covenant by baptism into his death must be

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God jealous of the sanctity of God against any form of blasphemy, hypocrisy, mockery or vain practice with the same cruelty that the grave is cruel, for the grave spares no person, makes no exceptions or accommodations. The love of God is as "coals of fire, which hath a most vehemant flame" where this vehement flame is literally translated as 'a flame of Jah'. Unless the love of God is as a burning flame of the Holy Spirit within us like the fire of the burnt offerings that was never allowed to go out but continually consumed the flesh - like in Jeremiah (Jeremiah 20 v 9) and Jesus Christ ( John 2 v 13-17), we can have no hope of being united in that most sublime unions of all - the unifying love of the marriage of the lamb (Revelation 19 v 7-9) . Despite this sublime expression of love from the heart of Solomon, he lapsed to allow the rule of his nature (the enmity) to supersede the rule of God in his life and became a representative of all who embrace the wisdom of God in Christ Jesus but then allow temptations of the adversary (Satan, the effect of the enmity) to overrule the law of God in Christ, even though still continuing to acknowledge the greatness of God in their speech and thoughts as he did. If Solomon with all his wisdom lapsed, then let not any other think that they are immune, for Jesus said, "many are called but few are chosen" ********************* Chapter 40 The covenant of God through Isaiah God continued to reveal details of His covenant up to the time of the apostles who were the last to bear the ‘light’ of new revelations, and Isaiah was one of those who carried that torch of faith in the promises of the covenant between Solomon and Jesus with the apostles. Of the life of Isaiah we know nothing except the only important feature - he was a man faithful to God and believed in the promises of the covenant of God. To him we are indebted for many of the precise details of the promises concerning the creation of the earth, the kingdom of God on earth, the Redeemer that God would raise up, the preparation of the redeemed - his companion, and the judgements of God on the unrepentant and these are described in the following four chapters - 41, 42, 43 & 44. ********************* Chapter 41 The covenant of God through Isaiah - creation The fundamental truth of the covenant of God is that He created the earth for His own pleasure and established it - forever - as a place of beauty and peace where His handiwork will glorify Him. Embedded within this truth (despite the curse of God) is the promise that it will be restored to its original pristine condition with no curse to spoil the beauty and peace, which can only be done by removal of human nature - the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God enmity the poison of the serpents lie. Without the covenant of God - that He created the earth for a purpose - there is no promise or hope of redemption from an eternal grave. God gave this bedrock of His covenant to Isaiah, “I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded” (Isaiah 45 v 11-12), and again, “Thus saith God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein” (Isaiah 42 v 5). Built upon the bedrock of creation by God is the founding promise that God created the earth for a purpose - in the same way that a skilled artificer would create an artifact for beauty and functionality, “For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else” (Isaiah 45 v 18-25), and again, “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind” (Isaiah 65 v 1725). This promise is the kernel of the hope of salvation of all those who had gone before Isaiah, and the focal point of the faith of all other to this day and was the core of the faith of Jesus Christ of whom Paul wrote to help us, “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12 v 2). This ‘new’ heavens and earth was the ‘joy’ that was set in the mind of Jesus, for it taught of a new rulership and ‘order’ of creation, not a new ‘physical’ creation. God created the heaven and earth as perfect, meaning that it could not be improved, and He has established it forever and described it as ‘very good’ (Genesis 1 v 31). He ‘stretched’ out the heavens (Isaiah 42 v 5; Isaiah 45 v 12; Isaiah 51 v 13, et al) where the stars, sun, moon and planets contain only a fraction of the range of 92 elemental substances (as in the periodic table) that make up the earth. The earth was therefore created first from the 'repository’ of elements first formed by God - each element being built up from the same wave-like particles of light energy (sub-photons to leptons, quarks, neutrons, protons, electrons, atoms and molecules) - from which wave-like particles of light-energy God ‘stretched’ out the heavens (universe) in a multitude of steradians (solid angles of energy) to form an infinite network of electromagnetic radiation of a wie range of frequencies counterbalanced with gravity for physical balance. The light of the stars we see has not been traveling for billions of years (the speed of light times immense distances) because that visible part of the spectrum of radiation (and all radiation) was placed there by God who 'stretched' out the heavens from the repository of elemental atoms that He first created from subphoton packets of wave-form energy to form a infinite web of interconnecting energy (and thus universal mass) with the unifying principle of conservation of energy i.e. energy cannot be created or destroyed it can only be transformed from one form to another. Electro-magnetic radiation of all frequencies (gamma to microwave) is everywhere throughout the universe and is constant as God is constant and everywhere present, 'in whom we live and move and have our being' (Acts 17 v 22-31). The universe was therefore created in a one day period (when time as we know it did not exist because the sun was not created until the fourth day) - not the billions of years

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God that popular science propagate, but it will continue to travel for billions (plus) of years or - in Gods covenant - for ever and ever. The spectrum of visible light (a very small segment of the whole spectrum of electro-magnetic radiation) is seen by our Godcreated eyes for beauty and for signs to teach us - His creatures - of His will, “And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good” (Genesis 1 v 14-18), and “……. the LORD thy maker, that hath stretched forth the heavens, and laid the foundations of the earth” (Isaiah 51 v 13). God created the sun and the moon to ‘rule’ our life by governing our measurement of time, He set them to regulate the growth of plants and trees as food for His creatures and to govern the reproduction cycles of many of the living creatures (except mankind). The stars are fixed but herald earths' seasons by the apparent rise and fall of their constellations as the earth spins on its axis during its ‘time-clock’ elliptical orbit of the sun. Thus by the expanding (stretching - see Isaiah et al) power of God and the 'contracting' (attracting) power of gravity, God balanced the solar system and the universe (all made up from the 92 created elements of God found on earth) with it's innumerable interconnecting individual-star to individual-star radiation paths to make an infinite network of invisible electro-magnetic radiation in which the solar system with the earth and fellow planets reside (the sun is also one of those radiation emitting stars). God then set Adam to have dominion over the terrestrial surface of the earth (Genesis 1 v 27-30) and instructed him - by observation of the stars and planets (which were forbidden to be worshipped) - that he was to rule the earth (Genesis 1 v 28) in the same obedience and faithfulness to his Creator as silently as do the sun and stars obey, "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun, Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race. His going forth is from the end of the heaven, and his circuit unto the ends of it: and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof." (Psalm 19 v 1-6). God set Adam and Eve as the ruling ‘galaxy’, the shining ‘stars’, the central ‘sun’ of all His terrestrial creation to be as a ‘heavenly’ rulership of the earth - the rulership of the law of God. In this rulership they failed by sin, which meant that the purpose of God in creation would continue - in that He would create a new, perfect and everlasting ‘heavenly’ rulership of the earth (by His law) symbolised by the planets and stars that always obeyed His laws but that Adam failed to be instructed and humbled by. This is the creation of the ‘new’ creation – the creation of one man in whom God is delighted (Isaiah 66 v 1-2) who will be as a ‘sun’ (Malachi 4) shining with the glory of God (Matthew 17 v 2, John 17 v 1-5), assisted by a companion orbiting ‘moon’ who reflects his glory (Song of Solomon 6 v 9-10) and fixed ‘stars’ who became lights in the darkness of the world but unmovable in the faith (Genesis 15 v 5, Daniel 12 v 1-3).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Thus God revealed the fine details of the fulfillment of the promises of His covenant to Isaiah and it is not without significance that the humble scrolls of this prophecy were discovered by the wandering goatherd near the Dead Sea and as a result of their finding, subsequently proven as genuine. ********************* Chapter 42 The covenant of God through Isaiah – Jesus Christ The covenant of God is to be fulfilled through one man in whom God is be delighted and Isaiah was shown that this man would be born a mortal man subject to the same curse that Isaiah was, in that he would die and be buried. The birth of this one - Jesus Christ - was according to Isaiah’s prophecy, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good.” (Isaiah 7 v 14-15) which was fulfilled in Mary who was also a mortal woman (Luke 2 v 21-24), “And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS” (Luke 1 v 26-35). By the prophecy of Isaiah, this man (by obedience to God) would rule his own spirit by the allegorical ‘butter and honey’ of the word of God so perfectly that he would become Immanuel which means ‘God with us’ in a mortal body, the fulfilment of the memorial of the name of God ‘I AM’ given to Moses (Exodus 3 v 14) (see chapter 27 - The burning bush - the covenant within the name of God) . Isaiah believed the covenant of God that this man - Jesus (the saviour) - would die as a mortal man and be resurrected as he wrote, “And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth” (Isaiah 53 v 9), and of his resurrection from the dead, “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors” (Isaiah 53 v 10-12). Isaiah believed that this man would be 'I AM' (God manifest in a mortal body) - but was shown by God that he would not be recognised as such when he came but would be hated, despised and killed for his faith as he wrote of Jesus, “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not” (Isaiah 53 1-8). Isaiah was also shown that this one would not be a man of natural physical appeal, "he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him." (Isaiah 53 v 2).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Thus God continued to reveal the fine details of the fulfilment of the promises of His covenant to Isaiah and it is not without significance that the scrolls of this prophecy were discovered and proven as genuine as a result of their finding by the goatherd near the Dead Sea. To confirm His promises to David that David's son would be a king ruling over an everlasting kingdom (in which Isaiah believed), God further revealed that this man Jesus Christ as 'son of man' would first rule his own spirit by the law of God and kill the opposition of the enmity in it's entirelty by the word of God with the Holy Spirit, and so established a kingship of ‘heavenly rulership’ in his heart, mind and life thus becoming truly the ‘son of God'. As a result of this proven victory, God (his Father) would elevate him in due time to rule the world as the ‘new’ creation of the kingdom of God on earth for ever, as it is written of him, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Councellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this” (Isaiah 9 v 6-7). The covenant of God required, that for Jesus to complete this work God must dwell in him by love (agape) and by the Holy Spirit in fulfilment of the memorial name of God (I AM), where the covenant in the word of God had said that God would dwell in man - but only on one condition - “For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones” (Isaiah 57 v 15) and again, “Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest? For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word” (Isaiah 66 v 1-2). God now showed that the promise of His covenant resided exclusively with one man who fulfilled those conditions, and by that one He would reside in many ‘sons and daughters’ who are likewise humble and contrite, characteristics that are not natural to mankind due to the resistance of the enmity in every man and woman as Isaiah wrote “Behold, the LORD's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear” (Isaiah 5 v 1-2). This meant that the covenant of God taught that Jesus would have to liberate those who hoped for salvation from their captivity to the enmity because of sin (because all mankind have sinned) and this was foretold by Isaiah, “The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn; To

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified” (Isaiah 61 v 1-3, Luke 17 v 17-21). The way in which this was done was according to the requirements of the word of God, in that Jesus should die as a sacrifice for the sins of others where his blood would wash away their sins as it is written, “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth” (Isaiah 53 v 6-7). But death alone - as an end in itself - is not an acceptable sacrifice to God and is not taught in His covenant, except where it is the culmination of a life where the effects of the enmity are entirely absent by killing them as they arise before temptation brings sin. God promised Isaiah that the one who would come would ‘repair the breach’ between God and man, and would ‘restore the paths’ to dwell in (Isaiah 58 v 12), which by interpretation is to regain access to the tree of life (and everlasting life) denied to mankind at the beginning (Genesis 3 v 2224, Revelation 2 v 7). This work of restoration and repairing is revealed in Isaiah chapter 58 (see Jesus became the light of the world) where it is shown that the name of God in Jesus (Emmanuel and ‘I AM’) was a lifetime work of mercy toward repentant sinners, of compassion in healing of the physically sick in order for them to repent in spirit, of pity in relieving the infirm to teach of the spiritual healing of our naturally infirm characters, of kindness to the physically disadvantaged to teach of the benefits of obedience to God and of love in that he died for the salvation of his friends. ********************* Chapter 43 The covenant of God through Isaiah – the kingdom of God The faith of Isaiah was fixed upon the fulfillment of the promises of Gods and his desire was that he should see their fulfillment through resurrection, but as Moses died without being able to enter the ‘land flowing with milk and honey’ and as Abraham died in faith of the same promises but did not receive them, so Isaiah died in the same hope (Hebrews 11 v 39-40). As a result of his unswerving faith (in that which he would not see during his life - Romans 8 v 24-25) - God revealed more precise details of the promises of His covenant to him and it is not without significance that the scrolls of this prophecy were discovered by a lowly goatherd near the Dead Sea and subsequently proven that our version of the prophecy is a genuine record of the ancient scrolls, thus setting his work as an important piece for us in the ‘jigsaw’ of the mystery of God from the beginning (Colossians 1) confirmed by the records of the words of Jesus in the Gospels by referring to Isaiah's work repeatedly. Thus Isaiah was shown parts of the covenant which have since been fulfilled and parts that are not yet fulfilled, collectively making up the full covenant of God in Jesus

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Christ - so that for us - those parts that have been fulfilled (for example, creation and the universe as we now know it, and the first coming of Jesus as a mortal man) are the assurance that the prophesies not yet fulfilled will do so in like surety. Isaiah was conscious that the inhabitants of the earth (including his own people the Jews - see Isaiah 59 v 1-15) were corrupt before God, collectively given over to disobedience of His laws and that that condition had ruled in the earth from the fall of Adam and Eve through (and beyond) the flood in Noah's days, right up to Isaiah's time and would be beyond him - until the promises and judgments of God were fulfilled. That promise was unambiguous, direct and to the point, "For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind." (Isaiah 65 v 17-25). This new creation is not referring to the physical earth (Ecclesiastes 1 v 4) but the creation that God intended - a world of obedience and peace with Him to replace the 'world' that man has invented - mans world, the world of the enmity, Satan, the devil, the 'world' - James 4 v 4, I John 2 v 15-17). It has been shown that as Jesus Christ ruled his own nature by the word of God so he will reign in like manner over the kingdom of God for ever as it is written, ‘Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end… … from henceforth even for ever’ Isaiah 9 v 6-7). Isaiah was promised that the seat of the government of God where Jesus Christ will reign will be the literal place that God has chosen to put His name (II Chronicles 6 v 6), a place that was an uninhabited mountain top when Abraham's strength of his belief in the resurrection of the dead was tested (Genesis 22) in order to realise the same promises that he had put his faith in, it is the place of the summit of Mount Moriah, Mount Zion, and what is now known as the ‘the rock’ in Jerusalem (Genesis 22, II Chronicles 3 v 1). So Isaiah was told, “…..for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem” (Isaiah 2 v 1-4). This government will be universal as it is written, “They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea” (Isaiah 11 v 9), and, “Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end….” (Isaiah 9 v 7). His reign will be a reign of righteousness where no vestige of human nature will be evident, “Behold, a king shall reign in righteousness, and princes shall rule in judgment” (Isaiah 32 v 1), and judgment between right and wrong will nit be one governed by 'human rights', “And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD……But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked” (Isaiah 11 v 110). As a result of the rulership of righteousness, the physical creation will be freed from much of the curse of God upon living creatures that now afflicts it (Genesis 3 v 17-18) (Romans 8 v 19-22 where 'creature' is all creation), violence among species and the natural ‘food chain’ where species eat species from the lion to the worm, the vulture to the insect and the shark to the fish spawn, as it is written, “The wolf also shall dwell

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice's den” (Isaiah 11 v 1-10), and, “The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent's meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD” (Isaiah 65 v 17-25), confirmed by Paul who later wrote, “…For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now….” (Romans 8 v 18-23). All these creatures - including mortal man under the rulership of the immortal saints will live on an earth where the effects of the curse upon the ground will be reduced, where the desert will blossom as the garden of the Lord as it is written, “For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations” (Isaiah 61 v 11), and, “The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing: the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the excellency of Carmel and Sharon, they shall see the glory of the LORD, and the excellency of our God” (Isaiah 35 v 1-2). Among all this beauty, the mortal - human - population of the earth will live at peace in subjection to the universal king Jesus Christ and his saints, “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee…… And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee” (Isaiah 60). there will be no more war or conflict, "And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more" (Isaiah 4 v 2). The saints will assist Jesus in ruling over the mortal inhabitants of the earth for 1000 years during which time the life span of mortal mankind will be extended as it was before flood, as it is written, “There shall be no more thence an infant of days, nor an old man that hath not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred years old shall be accursed” (Isaiah 65 v 20). ********************* Chapter 44 The covenant of God through Isaiah – the saints The faith of Isaiah was the faith of Noah, Abraham, Moses and David, a faith that God would raise up a ‘family’ from many generations and nationalities who would

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God inherit the earth forever as a result of the victory of one man over the enmity - his own human nature - who by this would become their saviour. God reaffirmed the belief of Isaiah by revealing further details of this ‘family’ (the multitudinous companion of Jesus Christ, the 'faithful' and the saints) by using the two complementary analogies, Sarah (the wife of Abraham who Paul referred to as the ‘father of the faithful’ Romans 4 v 16-17) - and Jerusalem (Mount Zion). God referred to this multinational people as the ‘servants of the Lord’ when He revealed to Isaiah what kind of people these would be, the sorrow they would pass through during their preparation and the glory they will one day be given when they are finally delivered from their ‘captivity’ to the enmity by the ultimate victory of Jesus, their ‘husband’. After God described the life and works of Jesus Christ in chapter 53, He then showed Isaiah in chapter 54 this future companion of Jesus Christ and concluded the description with the words, “This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD” (Isaiah 54 v 17). The type of people these are is prefigured in Sarah who was loyal and submissive to Abraham her husband, trusting implicitly in him to lead her into a ‘strange’ country in pursuit of the promises of the covenant of God and is set as a type of the faithful companion (men and women) of Jesus Christ who likewise allow him to lead them to the ‘promised land’ of the kingdom of God by faith. Peter wrote of her example, “Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement” (I Peter 3 v 3-6). This companion of Abraham (Sarah) was barren throughout the expected period of her fertility and endured the personal grief of her inability to satisfy her husbands longing for a family, which despite her bodily weakness, Abraham loved her. In this way God used her as a example of the natural inability of those called by God (to be prepared as saints) to produce an ‘heir’ to inherit the promises of the covenant of God, requiring that God intervene by His Holy Spirit to cause one of their kind (of the race of mankind) to conceive and bring forth a redeemer as their saviour from sin. This was accomplished in the miracle upon Mary (Luke 1 v 26-35) after the lesser example of what happened to Sarah when she was long beyond the capability of natural conception (Genesis 17 v 15-21). Of this 'barren woman' (of many generations prefigured in Sarah) Isaiah wrote, “Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery, is in pain, and crieth out in her pangs; so have we been in thy sight, O LORD. We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have as it were brought forth wind; we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth” (Isaiah 26 v 12-18). Thus until Jesus death, no redeemer-son was born of all the 'faithful', for all had sinned in some way including Isaiah who encapsulated this lament for all. But the answer of God to this heartfelt lament (uttered in spirit by all the faithful) was that He would raise up 'one' (the son of

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God promise) out of that faithful but 'barren woman', and this was the central hope of the promises of the covenant of God from the beginning, the promise of resurrection from the dead and it is the promise of the same covenant today, so God promised these faithful (the figurative 'barren woman') through Isaiah, “Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead” (Isaiah 26 v 19). This was the faith of Isaiah, that a saviour would be born, by a miracle of the will of God in a mortal woman, after the manner of barren Sarah and so he was moved to write, “Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the LORD… … Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed: neither be thou confounded; for thou shalt not be put to shame: for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more… … … For thy Maker is thine husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called. For a small moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I gather thee. In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith the LORD thy Redeemer” (Isaiah 54). As Abraham is refered to as the 'father of the faithful' (Romans 4 v 16-17) so Sarah is analogously the 'mother' and according to the promise of the covenant of God, of Sarah the 'barren woman' (as the spiritual mother of the faithful who God calls Zion) would - by the power of the Holy Spirit - be brought forth a multitudinous multinational family, who would be 'born' - not as a cosmopolitan babble of languages and cultures after the natural will of man (John 1 v 13 & 3 v 3) - but as one nation, at one time, collectively identified to Isaiah as ‘the servants of the Lord’. To confirm this miracle Isaiah was told, “Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a man child. Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children. Shall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? saith the LORD: shall I cause to bring forth, and shut the womb? saith thy God. Rejoice ye with Jerusalem, and be glad with her, all ye that love her: rejoice for joy with her, all ye that mourn for her” (Isaiah 66 v 7-24). Thus God taught that before this righteous 'nation' of many nations and generations (i.e. the faithful, the saints) could finally born into one people by resurrection from the dead, a redeemer of her race would first need to be raised up 'Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a man child', which was fulfilled some 2000 years ago. Out of and through that one, the 'nation' would finally be born by resurrection from the grave and from mortality some 2000 years later (in this generation, Luke 21 v 32) - 'Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once?' For the assurance that this promise will be fulfilled God said, 'Shall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? saith the LORD: shall I cause to bring forth, and shut the womb?', as therefore the birth, death, resurrection and ascent to God's right hand of Jesus is an accomplished fact (Acts 1 v 9-11) so likewise will his return be, to fulfill all the promises of the covenant of God.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Sarah (she who was the literal barren woman) is allegorically linked to Jerusalem as a figure of the matriarchal role model of composite body of the saints, a figure taken up by Paul to confirm the faith of Isaiah and Christians, “For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise. Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar. For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children. But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all. For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband” (Galatians 4 v 22-27). The hope of Isaiah was to stand on figurative Mount Sion with his redeemer as part of the people to be termed ‘new’ Jerusalem (not to be confused with literal Jerusalem, the literal hill of Zion, or to the Jews in particular) but as the composite, multitudinous, multinational people made into one nation, the ‘servants of the Lord’, as it is written, “And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads” (Revelation 14 v 1) and again, “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband…. … And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God” (Revelation 21) where ‘heaven’ is the heart, mind and character where the enmity has no part in rulership, it is the state of absolute rulership of the law of God and not a physical place of repose, whereas the ‘earth’ is the place where the enmity is the ascendant ruler in a heart, mind and character. When Jesus returns it will to be to destroy 'earthiness', the enmity collectively from the literal earth in order to establish ‘heaven’ on earth - the law and rule of God - as Jesus taught us to pray “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6 v 10). The barren woman (Sarah the wife of Abraham) and Jerusalem (Zion) are interchangeable figures, being the same in their analogies, and are used in the scriptures as allegorical examples of the ‘mother’ of the ‘children of promise’ in the sense that Sarah and Jerusalem are the matrons, ‘role models’, examples of faithful compliance. (Jerusalem is used in the sense that God intended it to be - the city of peace with Him, not the historical record of the city). Remembrance of them is to relive the reality of the comforting warmth and peace of a spiritual conceptual ‘womb’ of faith and 'first' love (Revelation 2 v 4-5) from which 'womb' many have been born and grown up into the family of God by the Holy Spirit, all of whom have renewed their vow “If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning” (Psalm 137). They are referred to as the ‘servants of the Lord’, the faithful, the ‘bride’, the companion of Jesus Christ, the saints and the family of God. The ‘children of promise’ are the multitudinous, multinational composite body of people taken from all generations since the creation who are to constitute the one ‘nation born in a day’ at the resurrection of mortality to immortality (I Corinthians 15 v 50-58) when Jesus returns to the earth (Acts 1 v 9-11), and will be made up of Jews and Gentiles (Galatians 3 v 27-29) who have converted to become children of God by faith

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God irrespective of their natural birth (Romans 2 v 25-28) after the example of Abel, Noah and Abraham. Sarah was a naturally barren woman (Genesis 11 v 30; 15 v 2 & 16 v 1) but at the ‘11th hour’ of her life God caused her to produce a son - Isaac - who was the ‘son of the promises’ of the covenant of God through whom they would be fulfilled (Genesis 15 v 4; Genesis 17 v 15-21, Galatians 4 v 28). Through Isaac, Sarah became the natural mother of the nation of Israel, who also at the ‘11th hour’ of their (Israels') existence as a nation brought forth the ‘son of promise’ - the Lord Jesus Christ - who was beloved of God his Father (as Isaac was of Abraham his father), beloved of the faithful (as Isaac was of Sarah) but hated by the Jews (collectively the nation of Israel) as Ishmael hated Isaac as it is written, “But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now” (Galatians 4 v 29; Genesis 21 v 9). 70 years after the birth of Jesus, the nation of Israel ceased to exist until 1948 when they recommenced nationhood as a shadow of their former self. From Abraham to the apostles (approximately 2000 years) the covenant of God was with Israel with a few Gentiles converting to being ‘children of promise by faith’, and from the apostles to now (also approximately 2000 years) the covenant of God has been with the Gentiles. When the ‘time of the Gentiles’ is fulfilled (Luke 21 v 24 & 27) - when Jesus returns to the earth - the covenant of God will be with the ‘children of promise’ made of both Jew and Gentile, the ‘new’ Israel of God, spiritual Israel, the Children of Israel by faith not by blood, new Jerusalem. Jerusalem is a literal city on a site chosen by God from the time of Abraham, but in relation to ‘spiritual Israel’ (the saints) literal Jerusalem is an analogy for ‘heavenly Jerusalem’ - the womb and origin of the spiritual heritage of the compact collectivity of the ‘children of promise’, in the same way that Sarah is the natural origin of the hereditary features of Israel - the Jews (which hereditary features are now known as the genes). As the outworking of the promises of the covenant of God were through a firstborn son of promise from whom would come many sons, so in parallel, the outworking of the purpose of the covenant of God - from the time of Sarah - is focused upon one rock at the peak of one mountain in the land at the eastern end of the Mediterranean, severally known as Canaan, Palestine and Israel. The rock is on the peak of Mount Moriah (in Abraham’s days), mount Zion (in David’s days), Herod's temple in Jerusalem (in Jesus days), the Rock (in these days) which has now become the focus of international tension as it is written beforetime, “And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it” (Zechariah 12 v 3) and it is this ‘rock’ that is the key to the understanding of the revelations of the covenant of God in the prophecy of Daniel as will be shown later. Jerusalem (in the analogy) is a ‘city of people’ that God is choosing to build upon the ‘rock’ (Jesus Christ), upon whom the focus of all His covenant is set, as Jesus said, “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock” (Matthew 7 v 24-25), and again, “And I say also unto thee, That

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (where the 'rock' is Jesus not Peter - Matthew 16 v 18). That rock is inextricably linked to Jesus Christ by the faith of Abraham who was prepared to sacrifice his beloved son of promise (Isaac) on that very rock in the belief of the resurrection of the dead and faith that God would do likewise (Genesis 22; Hebrews 11 v 17-19). That ‘rock’ was Jesus Christ upon whom the city of the living God heavenly Jerusalem - will be built, the city that Abraham had faith in, “For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God” (Hebrews 11 v 10). Of this spiritual city it is written, “Jerusalem is builded as a city that is compact together” (Psalm 122 v 3) using the analogy that every literal city is built of stones, wood and bricks drawn from the face of the surrounding earth, shaped and prepared, and assembled into a collection of abiding places. After this analogy the ‘heavenly Jerusalem’ is to be built with people-materials gathered from all nations on whole face of the earth for 6000 years, who are ‘prepared and shaped’ in character to become a citizens of God, children of promise, obedient to His every law and bearing His likeness in every detail of their life as ‘mansions’ (abiding places) of God, (John 14 v 1-3). The fulness of this analogy was perfected in the example of the building of the temple of Solomon on this very site, Mount Moriah of which it is written, “And the house, when it was in building, was built of stone made ready before it was brought thither: so that there was neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron heard in the house, while it was in building” (I Kings 6 v 7). When this greater city is built it will be said of those who are redeemed from mortality and the curse of sin, “And of Zion it shall be said, This and that man was born in her: and the highest himself shall establish her. The LORD shall count, when he writeth up the people, that this man was born there. Selah” (Psalm 87 v 5-6). In their mortality they became ‘citizens of that city’ by faith, by showing the same strict adherence to the rules and judgements of their mortal citizenship (of the present order) as they do by faith to the heavenly city in their hearts, as Paul instructed of subjection to temporal government, “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake” (Romans 13) and at the same time they subjected their hearts, minds and characters to be subject to the laws and byelaws of heavenly Jerusalem, “For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Philippians 3 v 20) where conversation means 'manner of life' or citizenship. We cannot be citizens of the order to come (that we cannot see) if we are not obedient citizens of this order (which we can see). Paul by the words of Isaiah, links Sarah and Jerusalem as the ‘mother’ of all the children of promise, “Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband. But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all” (Galatians 4 v 26-27) and again “But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels” (Hebrews 12 v 22-24). Jesus told John of the hope of the covenant of God, “Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God,

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name” (Revelation 3 v 12). To complete the revelation of the children of promise in the purpose of God shown to Isaiah, Jesus further showed John in the final revelation of the scriptures, the fulfilment of the consummate joy of the ‘barren’ woman and her future glory as the heavenly Jerusalem, “And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal” (Revelation 21) - in fulfilment of the promise to the barren woman Isaiah was moved by God to write about - “O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted, behold, I will lay thy stones with fair colours, and lay thy foundations with sapphires. And I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones” (Isaiah 54 v 11-12). In this completeness, John was also shown the complementary analogy of the ‘barren woman’ now as the bride of the Husband in whom God was manifest (I AM - in a mortal body as Emmanuel) but now as immortal as their 'head' and husband, “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband” (Revelation 21 v 2) of whom Isaiah had written, “For thy Maker is thine husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called” (Isaiah 54 v 5) - Jehovah, I AM, then in a mortal man, now in an immortal man. Thus God revealed the fine details of the fulfilment of the promises of His covenant to Isaiah and it is not without significance that the scrolls of this prophecy were discovered and proven as genuine as a result of their finding by the goatherd near the Dead Sea. ********************* Chapter 45 The covenant of God through Jeremiah – Israel, the Jews Jeremiah held the same faith as Isaiah and his forefathers but was sent specifically by God to the natural seed of Abraham (the nation of Israel) who at the time of Jeremiah were but two tribes - Judah and Benjamin - collectively known as Judah. The work of Jeremiah was to show that God - the Lord God who brought Israel out of Egypt - was a faithful, true and long-suffering in the performance of the promises of the covenant that He had given to His chosen people (Deuteronomy 7 v 6), but that He would not forever wait for repentance from sins of those that He called His own. Despite the spiritually degenerate state of the Jews, Jeremiah was sent to call them to repentance and God reaffirmed - through Jeremiah - that His covenant (the promises of eternal life on this earth after resurrection from the dead) were unbreakable and that God would bring to pass all that He had promised, even to the wayward natural seed of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob - the children of Israel (also referred to as ‘Jacob’) as

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Jeremiah wrote, “Fear thou not, O Jacob my servant, saith the LORD: for I am with thee; for I will make a full end of all the nations whither I have driven thee: but I will not make a full end of thee, but correct thee in measure; yet will I not leave thee wholly unpunished” (Jeremiah 46 v 28). God is faithful to the promises of His covenant made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Moses and to David and God showed through Jeremiah that He has remained faithful to this day and will be faithful to those promises until they are fully executed, as Jeremiah wrote concerning the scattering of Israel by God as punishment for their failure to repent and to recognise His beloved son Jesus Christ, “Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in mine anger, and in my fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely” (Jeremiah 32 v 37), and “Hear the word of the LORD, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock” (Jeremiah 31 v 10). The surety of the promises of the covenant of God to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is affirmed in that Israel were scattered in the days of Jeremiah but regathered 70 years later according to the words of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 25 v 11-12; Jeremiah 29 v 10). They were scattered again after they killed Jesus Christ, where they remained for nearly 2000 years in all countries of the world, only to be regathered in 1948 as a fragmented shadow of the former nation of Jews, but to be as a herald of the greater fulfilment of the promise as a children of Abraham wholly united to their God as it is written, “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people” (Jeremiah 31 v 31-37; Jeremiah 33 v 9-14). This has not yet been fulfilled. The partial regathering of Israel in 1948 is the prelude to the greater regathering when Jesus Christ returns to the earth, when the land surrounding Jerusalem will be prepared for the seat of his government in the House of God to be built upon the original Mount Moriah as the literal city of Jerusalem but set apart as the city of God, from whence the land of inheritance promised to Abraham and to his seed for ever (Genesis 15 v 13-21) and will spread out northwards to the river Euphrates, eastwards to the Persian Gulf, southwards to the Red Sea and westwards to the Mediterranean as was shown by Ezekiel (to be considered later). To teach of the reality and truth of this promise of the covenant of God (despite the apparent impossibility of this being so in view of the historical and current political and military situations in the Middle East) Jeremiah was to show (when he was in captivity in a similar impossible situation) that the promise of God was sure by faith. Jeremiah was imprisoned for no other reason than that he spoke the word of God in truth, and not only was he in literal prison, but was threatened by death from those he came to help in the same way that the Jews reacted to Jesus, “But I was like a lamb or

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God an ox that is brought to the slaughter; and I knew not that they had devised devices against me, saying, Let us destroy the tree with the fruit thereof, and let us cut him off from the land of the living, that his name may be no more remembered” (Jeremiah 11 v 19). In this apparently hopeless situation Jeremiah was told to demonstrate his faith in the goodness of God upon the repentant - embodied in the promises of the covenant - in that he was to buy a field in the land as a redemption of a possession for an inheritance (according to the law of God, Leviticus 25 v 25). At this time there was no practical hope of Jeremiah realising his hope in that lot of inheritance due to his incarceration as a result of the bitter hatred of his fellows and because of the invading Babylonian army, but he had faith that what God had promised He was able to do, “So Hanameel mine uncle's son came to me in the court of the prison according to the word of the LORD, and said unto me, Buy my field, I pray thee, that is in Anathoth, which is in the country of Benjamin: for the right of inheritance is thine, and the redemption is thine; buy it for thyself. Then I knew that this was the word of the LORD” (Jeremiah 32 v 6-15). Thus God showed further details of His covenant that a redeemer - who would be in the prison-house of mortality, surrounded by hostile fellows - would pay the price of his life (valued in shekels of silver, Jeremiah 32 v 9; Zechariah 11 v 12-13; Matthew 27 v 3-9) to redeem the inheritance that was lost by his poor relative, even as mankind have (by spiritual poverty through sin) lost the inheritance of salvation. The hope of life without death was reclaimed by the price of the blood of Jesus Christ. Jeremiah knew that the fulfilment of the purchase of his inheritance was not to be immediate for it is written, “And I charged Baruch before them, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Take these evidences, this evidence of the purchase, both which is sealed, and this evidence which is open; and put them in an earthen vessel, that they may continue many days” (Jeremiah 32 v 13-14) and as Abraham did not receive his inheritance but died in hope of them, and Moses did not enter the promised land but died in hope of the greater fulfilment of the promise and David did not see the house of God that he made preparations for but died in hope of a house and a city of immortal people, so Jeremiah did not repossess the inheritance he had redeemed, but died in faith and hope of the resurrection of the dead that he would receive - not plot of land - but the possession of an eternal inheritance in the kingdom of God, where the king would be the greater son of David as God told him, “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth” (Jeremiah 23 v 3-8) and “In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land” (Jeremiah 33 v 14-17). The covenant of God revealed through Jeremiah showed that the kingdom to come, centred on the rock of the mount of the land given by God to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob would be a kingdom that would govern every land of the earth and to which government every nation will be subjected as it is written, “At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart” (Jeremiah 3 v 17). God further revealed through Jeremiah the outworking of His purpose in that this one who would inherit the rulership of the world would not be a man who was in the favour of his natural fellows nor would he be immune from the ‘cloying’ effects of the enmity within him trying to ‘drag’ his character done to the level of human nature, nor would he escape the effects of the curse of God in death, for because of his unswerving faith in God and compliance to the word of God, Jeremiah was hated and became a prefigurement of his redeemer who by suffering - through obedience would attain to the standard of humble trust that God required. For this, the saviour needed to be despised because of his trust in God, to be rejected because of his belief in His word, to be killed because of his faithful obedience. As a prefigurement, Jeremiah was hated unto death because of envy (Jeremiah 11 v 19) as Jesus was of his fellows (Matthew 27 v 18), he was put in the stocks for public humiliation because of his righteousness (Jeremiah 20 v 2) as Jesus was led bound through the streets of Jerusalem to his crucifixion (Luke 23 v 26), he was imprisoned because of his persistence in speaking the word of God (Jeremiah 32 v 2) as a type of Jesus who was bound in the prison of mortality, he was dropped into the miry dungeon of no return because he refused to deny his God (Jeremiah 37 v 16; Jeremiah 38 v 6) even as Jesus was afflicted with the same miry cloying nature of human nature that all men are, as it is written in the Psalms, “He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings” (Psalms 40 v 2; Hebrews 2 v 9-18). We are indebted to the work and sacrifice of Jeremiah to show to us greater details of the covenant of God theat we who should come afterwards can benefit from the same hope of salvation that he did and share the same beliefs, that the kingdom of God would be a universal rulership, that it would be centred in Jerusalem surrounded in the immediate landscape by the inheritance of the natural seed of Abraham, the children of Israel and that they would be gathered and brought back from a universal dispersion to inherit that land for ever, that that people would never be destroyed from being a distinct and separate people, that the redeemer of the faithful and of the natural seed of Israel would be a mortal man who was hated and despised by his fellows but would be elevated to the highest honour of kingship of the world and that he would have friends - like Jeremiah - with him, and would purchase a possession in that everlasting inheritance for his friends as Jesus said, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15 v 13). ********************* Chapter 46 The covenant of God through Ezekiel – Mercy and forgiveness According as Peter later wrote, “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost” (II Peter 1 v 21) so God revealed to Ezekiel further details of His covenant with those who repent

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God of their sins (Jew and Gentile) according to His requirements as shown by example through His dealings with the people whom He chose to bear His name - the children of Israel - (where the ‘el’ in Isra-el is the name of God) to whom the covenant first belonged (Romans 9 v 4-8). The covenant of God is founded and made sure in the power of the application of the meaning of His names, LORD (Yehovah), GOD (El) and God (Elohim) (see 'Moses and the burning bush') as summarised in the description given to Moses as it is written, “And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation” (Exodus 34 v 6-7) where all men and women are 'guilty' of sin (I John 1 v 8-10) but as Ezekiel was to show, God will forgive those who repent of their sins in the way that He has appointed which is identified in the scriptures (Psalm 34 v 18; Psalm 51 v 17; Isaiah 57 v 15; Isaiah 66 v 1-2, II Corinthians 7 v 10-11; II Corinthians 2 v 1-9). It is the will of God through His covenant that all mankind repent in order for Him to be able to remove His curse of death so that they should live as He intended in His creation as Ezekiel was shown, “Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live?” (Ezekiel 18 v 23). As Israel rejected the terms of the covenant of God while still claiming rights to the benefits, so likewise has the collective body of mankind rejected the conditions of repentance that God has set and either invented alternative ways to penitence by ‘watering down’ and adulterating His word or have misinterpreted the God of love and compassion into an 'angry' God who must be appeased by human ‘sacrifice’ through oppressive edits or by physical rejection irrespective of repentance, as Jesus experienced with the elder of Israel, “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone” (Matthew 23 v 23), and again of the man who was cast out of the synagogue by the elders because he believed in the compassion of God seen through Jesus who said, “If this man were not of God, he could do nothing. They answered and said unto him, Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out. Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when he had found him, he said unto him, Dost thou believe on the Son of God? He answered and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him? And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee. And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him” (John 9). Without the bedrock and foundation of forgiveness of sins through repentance according to divine standards - there is no meaningful covenant of salvation from death for mankind, and therefore failure to maintain this compassionate foundation of faith (by increasing or decreasing the requirements) is an adulteration of the standards of divine forgiveness and is a denial of the power of the name of God. Removal or denial of the bedrock and foundation of forgiveness of sins through repentance is

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God blasphemy of His name (mercy, grace, long-suffering, goodness and truth) and is to take His name as a ‘vanity’ or empty title in violation of the first commandment, “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain” (Exodus 20 v 7) confirmed later by James, “For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment” (James 2 v 13). Upon this bedrock, Ezekiel was told to reaffirm the compassion of the promises of the covenant of God to all who hope to enjoy the benefits of that covenant, “The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die” (Ezekiel 18 v 20-21). Contrary to teachings that the Almighty God is tolerant of those who despise His word of mercy, Ezekiel was caused to show the equanimity of the ways of God, “But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die” (Ezekiel 18 v 24). Thus Ezekiel was caused to reaffirm the foundation and bedrock of the hope of the promises of the covenant of God relied upon by all the faithful from Abel onwards and which are equally applicable to this day, “When a righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and dieth in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die. Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die” (Ezekiel 18 v 26-28). This is the foundation upon which all the faithful from Abel have stood and without which they could not have continued their lives of service to the will of God and that faith has not changed to this day as Paul wrote, “For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable” (I Corinthians 15 v 12-23) where resurrection of the dead to immortal life (I Corinthians 15 v 50-55) can only be by forgiveness of sins. The appeal of the covenant of God to embrace the compassion of His mercy is unchanged today and is now extended to every nationality as Ezekiel was moved to appeal to his fellows, “Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye” (Ezekiel 18 v 31-32). *********************

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 47 The covenant of God through Ezekiel – Resurrection from the dead The covenant of God that men and women will live for ever on this earth does not override the curse that God placed upon mankind in the beginning in that he would return to the dust from which he is formed (Genesis 3 v 19) meaning that mankind’s lifespan was limited by time and when that lifetime is spent the result is the grave. In a complimentary balance of compassion with the curse, the covenant of God embraces the prospect of physical resurrection from the grave - in the mortal form that the body last lived - whereupon there is an accounting of the way that the life was spent - either in payment to the flesh (the enmity) - or in payment to God by obedience. According to the reckoning of these individual accounts - by Jesus Christ in the power of God - so it will be decided who receives the mercy of God for resurrection from mortality to immortality, and who is to be returned to the grave for ever. The word of God to Ezekiel concerning the repentant sinner was, “Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die” (Ezekiel 18 v 26-28) which does not refer to escape from the termination of mortal life in the grave embodied in the curse of God (the ‘first’ death, Revelation 20 v 5-6) but refers to a death that is limited by time according to the mercy of God upon repentant sinners, alternatively known as ‘sleep’ (John 11 v 11-13; I Corinthians 15 v 51; I Thessalonians 4 v 14). In parallel God told Ezekiel, “……the soul that sinneth, it shall die” (Ezekiel 18 v 4 & 20) referring to the permanent death of unrepentant sinners whose death is not a ‘sleep’ but terminal. Therefore the full hope of the resurrection of the dead in the covenant of God is only applicable to repentant sinners, where in all unrepentant sinners death is final - either by no resurrection at all - or by resurrection to mortality and then to return to the grave due to spiritual unaccountability’s of disobedience in the life that was lived. In all this there is the central certainty that forms the core of the truth of the words of God through Ezekiel - ‘the soul that sinneth it shall die’ (Ezekiel 18 v 4), and the repentant ‘…shall not die’ (Ezekiel 18 v 28) - the covenant of God requires that the saviour and redeemer of the ‘family’ of these repentant sinners should not sin at all in order to provide the price for their redemption and yet - that he should die. The curse of God in death overrides any other promise of the covenant of God in that it is absolute and therefore requires the compassion and mercy of God to raise the dead. All men and women are born under this condition, therefore to justify the righteousness of his Father in His condemnation of mankind, Jesus was required to bear the same nature and submit to the personal finality of death but with the hope of a time-dependant sleep over which he - or any man - has no power. In this work Jesus succeeded, not as an isolated icon of superior nature to his neighbours but as a mortal friend who took upon himself the shame, the reproach and the guilt of their crimes as if they were his own (Isaiah 53; I Peter 2 v 18-25; Hebrews 2 v 14-18). For this sacrifice, the truth of the mercy of the covenant of God as revealed to Ezekiel was perfected in the promise of a time-limited sleep of death as distinct to a permanent terminal death, because - in His mercy - God was able to raise Jesus from the dead on

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God the third day of his ‘sleep’ in order to fulfil the promise through David in the Psalms “For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption” (Psalms 16 v 10-11). The joy of the hope of the promises of the covenant of God is that the faithful who rest in the grave (as dead as any other) will also be raised in the good time of God that is when Jesus returns to the earth according as it is written “But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming” (I Corinthians 15 v 20-23) and as Isaiah had foretold of Jesus Christ in promise of the covenant of God, “Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead” (Isaiah 26 v 19). This was the faith of Ezekiel (as it was in his faithful ancestors) and was revealed to him in a vision of ‘dry bones’ which came together as inanimate bodies whereupon they were made alive by the Holy Spirit, “Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves. And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD” (Ezekiel 37 v 1-14 & 21-28). In this promise, the hope of the covenant of God in both natural Israel and the ‘children of promise’ (spiritual Israel, the multinational composite body of the saints) is brought together and where the regathering of the Jews under the banner of one nation of Israel from the ‘graveyards’ of the first and second world wars is a herald of the greater fulfilment of the promise both to Jew and 'child of promise by baptism’, as Jesus said of the generation that would witness this momentous event, “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled” (Matthew 24 v 32-36) where ‘that generation’ is the post-war generation (born 1945-1948) whose average life expectancy is now reputed to be approximately 78 years. As the Jewish and Gentile faithful are to be united for ever as one immortal people under the protection of Jesus Christ their shepherd, ‘husband’, king and saviour (Revelation 7 v 9), so the natural children of the twelve tribes of Israel are to be united as one nation in the land of Promise as mortal inhabitants for the first time in 3000 years (I Kings 12) where both will be united under one king Jesus Christ according to the promise of the covenant to Ezekiel concerning the throne of Israel, “I will overturn, overturn, overturn, it: and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him” (Ezekiel 21 v 27). This future miracle was revealed to Ezekiel symbolicaly as the joining of two sticks to be one stick (Ezekiel 37 v 15-28) to the end that God may be glorified for His incomprehensible mercy and compassion (Ezekiel 37 v 28). *********************

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 48 The covenant of God through Ezekiel – A house of prayer for all nations The promise of the covenant of God is that He will build a house of worship above the site of the rock that is on the top of the mountain that Abraham proved his faith in the resurrection of the dead by preparing to sacrifice his own beloved son (Genesis 22), the rock of Mount Moriah, Mount Zion. David and Solomon shared this faith which was confirmed to David when he was saved from the avenging angel of the Lord in the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite - the site upon which Solomon built the temple of God (I Chronicles 21; I Chronicles 22 v 1; II Chronicles 3 v 1). Ezekiel was shown the form and dimensions of the house that will be built on that site as the focal point of worship for the whole world as promised by (Isaiah 2 v 1-4), (Micah 4 v 1-4), (Zechariah 8 v 20-23; 14 v 16) and Jesus (Mark 11 v 17). The house will not be a place of curiosity and architectural interest as temples are today, but will be holy, dedicated to quiet contemplation of the goodness and mercy of God as it is written, “This is the law of the house; Upon the top of the mountain the whole limit thereof round about shall be most holy. Behold, this is the law of the house” (Ezekiel 43 v 12), and as Isaiah wrote "for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people" (Isaiah 56 v 3-8). All mortal people of all nations allowed to live on earth after the judgments of God will be required to visit this house to contemplate to wonder of the power of the name of God, worship the King Jesus Christ and God his Father, to praise God for all His wondrous works and pray for help to be prepared for the second opportunity to be made immortal like the saints at the end of the 1000 year long kingdom. The order of pilgrimage will be without congestion or clamour, those that journey from the north gate will traverse the house and exit through the south gate and those from the south will pass in the opposite direction (Ezekiel 46 v 9). There will be a city for refreshment and rest (Ezekiel 48 v 15-20). From this house the law of God will flow throughout the whole world like a stream of refreshing water as the source and essence of spiritual and moral life to feed and to cleanse (as water is to the natural body) the souls of all mortal inhabitants in every land as Zechariah wrote, “And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be. And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one” (Zechariah 14 v 89). As an physical example of this flow of laws, counsel and promises there will be a literal river which will flow out from a spring in the east side of the temple of the house of the Lord and down to the Jordan valley to cleanse the Dead Sea so that it will become sea of abundant fertility (Ezekiel 47). To facilitate the flow of this new river the mount of Olives is to be reshaped as shown by Zechariah (Zechariah 14 v 3-4). *********************

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 49 The covenant of God through Ezekiel – fulfilment of the promise to Abraham The house of the Lord, the temple, will be in a portion of land dedicated to the work of the house of God and in which only those ministering in the order of the house will be permitted to live. All pilgrims will pass through the land on the highway of the Lord (Isaiah 11 v 16; Isaiah 19 v 23; Isaiah 35 v 8), in at the north and out of the south or vice versa (Ezekiel 46 v 9), but the ministers of the house of God – the priests - will live in Jerusalem and the city will be given to seed of Abraham (by the promise), the people of Israel - it will not be a city of commerce or leisure - it will be the ‘City of Peace’, Jerusalem. The natural ‘seed’ of the promise given to Abraham will inherit the land which was covenanted to him, “In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates: The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites, And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims, And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites” (Genesis 15 v 18-21). The charting of this land was shown to Ezekiel in chapter 48, a land that extends from Jerusalem northwards to the river Euphrates, southwards to the Red Sea, westwards to the Mediterranean and Eastwards to the Persian Gulf, where the desert will be healed of its barrenness as it is foretold, “The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert” (Isaiah 35). The Jews will no longer be a despised people, Israel will no longer be unwanted nation, Jerusalem will no longer be a burdensome stone (Zechariah 12 v 1-3) but Israel will be the example to the world of a people devoted to their God and His son Jesus Christ as it is written, “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn” (Zechariah 12 v 10). Ezekiel died in the hope of this covenant, as all who have shared the hope have done so, but the time will come when their graves will open, and as Lazarus came forth as a mortal man (John 11) so will they (with him) come forth again to be judged, justified and made to stand on this earth for ever as immortals to enjoy the glory and beauty they had faith in as a reality, for said Isaiah, “For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him” (Isaiah 64 v 4). *********************

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 50 The covenant of God through Daniel As a young man with the same faith as his forefathers in the promises of the covenant of God, Daniel was separated from the temple of God, from the physical sanctuary of his beliefs, the place of the expression of his faith – the temple built upon the singular summit rock of Mount Moriah where Abraham had proved his faith in the promise of the death and resurrection of a beloved son of God who would secure redemption for all who entered into the covenant of God by solemn vow of obedience (Genesis 22) the same singular site where king David ‘bought’ the salvation of the people by paying the full price for an offering of oxen to stop the plague of the angel of God (II Samuel 24; I Chronicles 21 v 1-30 & 22 v 1-2). Daniel was taken captive away from the temple of God in Jerusalem and the teachings of his Messiah contained in the ordinances of the law of the Tabernacle - to the pagan city of Babylon about the year 607BC (Daniel 1 v 1-4). He had no more opportunity to express his faith by sacrificial offerings as required under the law to demonstrate his faith in the work of his future saviour, he had no prospect to observe the evidence of the statutory daily sacrifices of the continual burnt offerings which taught of the victory of his redeemer over the enmity, no more gatherings at Jerusalem on the Passover feast to remember the deliverance of Israel from Egypt, or the feast of Weeks in remembrance of the firstborn saviour and the many born after him, nor the feast of Tabernacles to celebrate the peace of the kingdom of God. Eight years later the ‘daily sacrifice’ was taken away (II Kings 24 v 11-16) and 11 years after that Jerusalem was sacked (587BC. II Chronicles 36). Despite his captivity in a pagan land, no circumstance could alter the faith of Daniel (Daniel 1 v 8-21; Daniel 6) he continued to believe in God and to have faith in the promises of the covenant of God - in the restoration of the house of God in Jerusalem - and in the Messiah who would fulfil the covenant in which he trusted, and as a result of his unswerving faith was told that he would have a place in the kingdom of God that would come when the prophecies that he was shown (by types and figures) were fulfilled, as it is written, “But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days” (Daniel 12 v 13). ********************* The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 51 The covenant of God through Daniel … the inheritance of the saints At the end of his life a confirmation of the promises of the covenant of God was given to Daniel as an assurance to him, "But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days." (Daniel 12 v 13). This ‘lot’ in which Daniel was to 'rest' is part of the physical everlasting inheritance of the seed of

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Abraham (by promise i.e. Spiritual Israel –Jew and Gentile) on the rejuvenated earth according to the promise of the covenant of God to Noah (Genesis 8 v 21-22) and to Abraham (Genesis 13 v 14-18) and as was confirmed by Jesus to John after Jesus was made immortal, "And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth." (Revelation 5 v 10), an inheritance of everlasting life amongst the beauty of the earth as the Garden of Eden was created. It is the promise of God that the people He chooses to inherit the earth will enjoy the peace and beauty of the whole earth for ever in the creation that God made for His pleasure, and each saint will have a lot - a portion in which to ‘rest’ or dwell - as foretold by Jesus in the parable of the talents, “And it came to pass, that when he was returned, having received the kingdom, then he commanded these servants to be called unto him, to whom he had given the money, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. Then came the first, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds. And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities” (Luke 19 v 11-27) . This was later confirmed by Jesus in his last message of the Revelation to John, “from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood. And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.” (Revelation 1 v 5-6), and again concerning the joy of the saints at that time, “hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen” (Revelation 5 v 10). In the same promise, Daniel was told, “But the saints of the most High shall take the kingdom, and possess the kingdom for ever, even for ever and ever” (Daniel 7 v 18-27). A saint is a person sanctified by God by the action of the Holy Spirit during their mortal existence followed by forgiveness of all their sins after resurrection from the dead in the mercy of God through the blood of Jesus Christ (Revelation 7 v 13-14). For this to be possible, the hope of all believers from Abel onwards would have to be realised in that there would have to be a resurrection from the dead, because all of them had died and been buried. God used Daniel to confirm this central promise of His covenant in language that can be understood by everybody, “And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt” (Daniel 12 v 2) which speaks also of a judgment of those raised, to account between the obedient and the disobedient as was confirmed in the next verse, “And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever” (Daniel 12 v 3). This is the same judgment that Jesus foretold in the parable of the shepherd, “When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left” (Matthew 25:31-46). When Jesus referred to his second coming to the earth as ‘When the Son of man shall come in his glory’ (Luke 21 v 27) so similarly was Daniel told, “And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book” (Daniel 12 v 1) where 'a time of trouble' refers to the 'last days' of Gentile rulership of the earth marked by conflict and global turmoil in all aspects of life as experienced in the early 21st century, and ‘at that time’ refers to a particular climaxing conflict during that 'time of trouble' - a conflict between two secular powers who have a common ideological, political and religious origin but who become opposed to each other as a result of Israel – their common enemy - dwelling in the land that God has chosen for them as was shown to Abraham. The return of Jesus Christ to the earth (as was later revealed to the apostles who watched him go into heaven “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven” Acts 1 v 11) - was shown to Daniel in the interpretation of Nebuchadnezzers dream through the figure of a stone smiting the feet of an image and grinding it to dust as Nebuchadnezzer was told, “Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces…..and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth” (Daniel 2 v 26-49). The dream was of an image with head of gold, chest of silver, abdomen and thighs of brass, legs of iron, feet and toes part of iron and part clay and a stone cut out without hands smote the toes and the whole edifice was ground to power. The interpretation was a confirmation of the outworking of the covenant of God in His rulership over nations (Daniel 4 v 17) according to His purpose to fulfil the promises of a future kingdom of righteousness on earth after 6000 years of preparation of saints to inhabit it. History has confirmed the truth of the prophecy through Daniel, the head of gold was Babylon (6th century BC), silver was MedianPersia empire (4th & 5th century BC), the brass the Grecian empire (2nd, 33rd & 4th centuries BC, the iron the Roman empire (1st century BC to 4th century AD) and the divided iron and clay of the feet the successive empires since the Roman empire (4th to 19th centuries BC - none of which were as strong and universal a Rome) and finally the ten toes of the feet the nations of the late 20th and early 21st centuries. The stone 'cut out without hands' is representative of Jesus Christ raised up by God as a Saviour of mankind who will return to subdue all the nations in the days where there is a social, financial, industrial re-mingling of nations not seen since the building of the tower of Babel (when the nations were first formed by language barriers, Genesis 11 v 1-9) and the gap between rich and poor, strong and weak (iron and clay) will grow wider than ever in the history of the world. The 'image' is the figurative description of the 'rule of man' on the earth and the 'great mountain' that 'filled the earth' that grew out of the stone is the rule of the kingdom of God with Jesus Christ as universal king, “And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever. Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure” (Daniel 2 v 44-45). This kingdom is the kingdom of God that will be set up on the face of the earth when Jesus Christ returns - as is promised in the covenant of God - the hope of all believers from Abel till this day. ********************* Chapter 52 The covenant of God through Daniel … the coming of the kingdom of God The focal point of the kingdom of God upon earth will be the house of God to be built upon the singular rock, set upon the summit of the particular mountain, situated in the land that God promised to the seed of the promise of Abraham, a land that God has said is His land (Leviticus 25 v 23; Deuteronomy 11 v 12), a land severally known as Canaan, Palestine and Israel, and the mount alternatively known as Mount Moriah, Mount Zion and the Rock. As was shown through the prophesies of Isaiah and Ezekiel, the laws of God - and the government of the whole world - will go forth from this site, a site which from the days of Abraham has been the focus of the hopes of all believers and to which all their spiritual aspirations grow and from which Daniel was separated by captivity (II Kings 24 v 11-15), but was never forgotten by him (Daniel 6 v 10) (Daniel 9 v 1-19). As a result Daniel was given symbolic prophecies concerning the fulfilment of the purpose of God centred on historic events that would happen in this focal point and where the beloved son of the covenant God would die and be resurrected (after the pattern of Isaac on the same rock, Hebrews 11 v 17-19) and would return to it (Acts 1 v 9-12) in the good time of the purpose of God to establish the kingdom of God (his Father) for ever on this earth, without which none of the promises of the covenant from the beginning have any meaning. It was towards this place - and all that it symbolised - that Daniel prayed as it is recorded, “And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes:…… Now therefore, O our God, hear the prayer of thy servant, and his supplications, and cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctuary that is desolate, for the Lord's sake” (Daniel 9) where Daniel referred to the focus of his hopes in the promises of the covenant of God, promises of a redeeemer being rasied up of his brethren who would die for their salvation on this site, be resurrected and so make possible a way into an eternal inheritance in the kingdom of God when God would dwell with His saints as His sanctuary. Throughout the prophecy of Daniel symbols of time - cycles and periods - were given so that simple and uncomplicated people could understand them at the appropriate time ordained by God when the mystery of the symbols would be opened as Daniel was told, “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased” (Daniel 12 v 4) at which time God would deem it appropriate that they should be understood - not for academic fame, or to threaten listeners with impending doom unless they repent –

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God but to reassure the few who remain waiting for the return of Jesus in quiet godliness that God has not forgotten His promises, even though their beliefs and faith are assaulted by widespread opposition from an increasingly God-less enmity-driven hostile world where alternative theories of the origin and meanings of life grow and blossom into gaunt tinsel-draped artificial tree-like groves to be worshipped by who have no interest in God. A time when 'religions' out-vie each other with ever more extreme and violent verbal and physical assaults and anti-religions develop out of the sciences and psuedo-science, as politics descend into horse-trading and corruption, and the nations become locked into a global economy. Days in which all these are forcefully promoted by mass media, convincingly presented by the latest technology and internationally accepted by a population never tired of something new, indeed an age ‘where knowledge shall be increased’. That ' age of knowledge' is this age (early 21st century), and knowledge (in religion, science, technology and politics) will continue to increase at an exponential rate (like uncontrolled interest on a financial debt) until Jesus returns. ********************* Chapter 53 The covenant of God through Daniel … the coming of the kingdom of God … Time periods The times given to Daniel were interchangeable cycles and periods. A ‘cycle’ is a day or year measured like a point on the rim of a revolving wheel as it passes its starting position once every turn - so likewise a day and a year are measured by the revolving earth in its orbit around the sun. A ‘period’ is a divinely appointed time in days, weeks, months and years that does not return to its starting point but is set by God as a time period to have a significance in the revealing of His purpose - for example seven days (1 week) is a ‘period’ which, like stepping stones across a river, take us through the ‘cycle’ of the year, and 50 years in the Mosaic law (Leviticus 25 v 9-13) is a 'period' chosen by God that marks out the passage of centuries. Several periods are used by God, for example, the ‘period’ of seven days creation equating to seven thousand years of fulfillment of an everlasting prefect creation - 6 days creation + 1 Sabbath of rest = 6000 years + 1000 years kingdom of God after which there will be no curse whatever (Genesis 1; II Peter 3 v 8, I Corinthians 15 v 23-28, Revelation 21 v 4). It is a simple figure that can be understood by the most uncomplicated of people to whom the call of God is directed. There is a ‘period’ of seven weeks - the ‘Feast of Weeks’- culminating in the day of Pentecost as it is written in the law, “Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn. And thou shalt keep the feast of weeks unto the LORD thy God with a tribute of a freewill offering of thine hand, which thou shalt give unto the LORD thy God, according as the LORD thy God hath blessed thee” (Deuteronomy 16:10; Leviticus 23; Acts 2 v 1).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God There is a period of seven years where no farming was to be done in the seventh year, “Six years thou shalt sow thy field, and six years thou shalt prune thy vineyard, and gather in the fruit thereof; But in the seventh year shall be a Sabbath of rest unto the land, a Sabbath for the LORD: thou shalt neither sow thy field, nor prune thy vineyard” (Leviticus 25 v 1-7). Built upon this seven-year period is a further period where the time spans of these seven year ‘periods’ (six years work and one year rest) were to be accumulated throughout seven more ‘periods’ to make 49 years (7 x 7 years) - plus one - making 50 years, the year of Jubilee as it is written, “And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and the space of the seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years. A jubile shall that fiftieth year be unto you: ye shall not sow, neither reap that which groweth of itself in it, nor gather the grapes in it of thy vine undressed. For it is the jubile; it shall be holy unto you: ye shall eat the increase thereof out of the field. In the year of this jubile ye shall return every man unto his possession” (Leviticus 25 v 8-55). These ‘periodic’ passages of fifty years (which would occur at least once in the lifespan of every citizen of 70 years) marked a ‘period’ of hope for their release from poverty or servitude to the freedom of the inheritance given to them by God and taught them of the greater hope that God has promised of release from the bondage of mortality by sin to the freedom of an eternal inheritance by resurrection from the dead. The year of Jubilee was the pivotal year in the life of a faithful Israelite in that it formed the foundation of their aspirations to share in the future fulfillment of the promises of the covenant of God to their forefathers, and was the year whereby they anchored the times of their calendar, as is found in the ‘times’ that Ezekiel uses, “Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month” (Ezekiel 1 v 1) which refers to the thirtieth year from the previous Jubilee. There are more divinely chosen periods. 40 days and 40 years are ‘periods’ that God has chosen to represent the outworking of His covenant as shown in the time that Moses spent in Mount Sinai (Exodus 24 v 18) receiving all the details of the law and the patterns of the Tabernacle, all of which foretold the covenant of God to be fulfilled in Jesus Christ who by killing his own enemy (the enmity within him) allowed the law of God to rule in his heart, and was summarised by the 40 days Jesus spent in the wilderness overcoming his temptations from the Satan within him (Matthew 4 v 2), which enemy (the devil) was prefigured in Goliath who similarly defied Israel for 40 days and was slain by David (I Samuel 17 v 16). Israel wandered in the wilderness 40 years to prove their faith in the promises of the covenant of God (Deuteronomy 8 v 2-3) during which time they searched the Promised Land for 40 days to see just how beautiful and rich the promise of the covenant was (Numbers 13 v 25). Elijah was sent by God on a 40 day journey to witness the full power of the glory of God encompassed in His covenant - that God will be manifest (I AM) in a mortal man made immortal (I Kings 19 v 8) as the assurance of the hope of the promises of that covenant, in contrast to the judgments of God contained in that same covenant upon the unrepentant contempories of Noah as was experienced in the 40 day downpour which contributed with the upheaval of the earths crust to the flood (Genesis 7 v 4-12).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God To complete the ‘periods’ that God has chosen to use to describe the outworking of His purpose, He has divided the day into evening and morning ‘periods’ as was described in the creation (Genesis 1) and then later enlightened us as to why, by incorporating in the law the teaching of the periodic ‘morning’ and ‘evening’ sacrifice, together with the lighting of the lamps of the Tabernacle and the offering of incense to God as a figure of ascending prayer (Numbers 28 v 1-5; Exodus 30 v 7-8), the three being a figure of the fulfillment of the work of Jesus Christ as the High Priest of the faithful after the order of the immortal Melchisadek as revealed by Paul (Hebrews 7 v 1-4). There are therefore several divinely chosen ‘periods’ (the 7 day week, 7 weeks – 50 days, 7 years and 50 years, 40 days and 40 years, and the ‘morning’ and ‘evening’) that God used through Daniel as figures for the approximate timing of momentous events in the outworking of His purpose - for the specific end that the humble-hearted faithful will be assured that He has not forgotten His purpose, but that by these periodic similes He is still patiently working to fulfil the hopes of all who have died, and those who still live in hope of His mercy, and so that He can give His Beloved Son - Jesus Christ - the inheritance that He has promised him. The periodic dates were not given for mathematicians, chronologists, historians and psuedo-philosophers to impress their congregations with ‘prepare-to-meet-thy-doom’ forecasts. God does not require any to serve Him out of fear of impending judgment, but because they love Him, irrespective of whether His purpose will be fulfilled in their lifetime or not. The hope that Daniel and of all those who embrace the covenant of God by solemn vow to serve Him in obedience to His word, is that there will be a time when their sins will be permanently removed and ended (in the mercy of God), that they will be reconciled to God by forgiveness of all their transgressions (by the blood of Jesus), that everlasting righteousness will be brought onto the earth (by the man Jesus Christ who achieved holiness by obedience), that he will be anointed both King and Priest to rule and govern the earth (who was made Most Holy by the action of the Holy Spirit), that the same anointing will finally cover the faithful – who will live for ever under his rule, and that Jerusalem would be restored as the place of the sanctuary where all nations would go to worship God - a house of prayer for all nations - as Jesus testified of the temple of God sited upon the rock at the top of the mount - Mount Moriah and Mount Zion, “Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves” (Mark 11 v 17). Further details are given in the next chapter *********************

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 54 The covenant of God through Daniel … the coming of the kingdom of God “… 70 weeks” Because of his faith in the hope in the promises of the covenant of God, and for the reassurance of the faith of all who follow him (Jew and Gentile – ‘thy people’), Daniel was told, “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy” (Daniel 9 v 24). This 70 is one of the times when God used the symbols of the ‘periods’ (7 days, 50 days, 7 years and 50 years and so on) and any of these ‘periods’ can be applied to the number ‘70’ that Daniel was told. Owing to the fact that the hope of Daniel and all other believers has not yet been fulfilled, the first three ‘periods’ (7 days, 50 days, 7 years multiplied by 70 ) cannot be true in this case, which leaves the fourth ‘period’ of 50 years, the Jubilee year which was ‘anchor period’ of the Jewish calendar and target of their hope for release from servitude and poverty, the prefigurement of eternal salvation by release from servitude to sin. 70 ‘periods’ of 50 years gives an overall period of 3500 years (70 x 50 years) from the time of the inauguration of the law of the Jubilee which was in the year BC 1472 (this can be verified from several biblical sources, one of which is Ezekiel’s use of the ‘thirtieth’ year (Ezekiel 1 v 1) which - taken from the known year of the captivity makes the previous Jubilee year as 622BC). It is simple arithmetic to take away ‘periods’ of 50 years (or in 2 x 50’s - i.e. 100's) to arrive at the year of inauguration 1472 BC. It is a joyful prospect that God has never forgotten the promise of the covenant of His law and has counted all the subsequent 50-year ‘periods’ since that time in accordance with His words to Daniel, where the last counted Jubilee (the 69th) computes to 1978 AD making the next Jubilee (if it was kept by the Jews) as in fact the 70th Jubilee, when Jesus will commence the work of preparing the earth for the Kingdom of God and the saints will receive the blessing of eternal life, and Jesus will be king according to the prophecy “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy” (Daniel 9 v 24). (The inauguration year of BC 1472 can also be confirmed by events in the history of Egypt in the rise of the usurping power of queen Hatsepshut (over her son Tuthmoses III) after the untimely death of her husband Tuthmoses II). In all accumulations of calendar periods there can be errors of up to 4 years (at least 2 years - however accurate they may be collated) therefore in accordance with the specific words of Jesus Christ we can never know the date (or even the actual year) of the return of Jesus Christ, but only the era in which he will come - as an assurance that God has not forgotten the promises of the covenant that He has made with the forefathers, as was taught by Jesus, “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father” (Mark 13 v

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God 32) and by Paul, “For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry” (Hebrews 10 v 37). ********************* Chapter 55 The covenant of God through Daniel … the coming of the kingdom of God “… 2300 days” The central hope of the promise of the covenant of God for repentant sinners is the final removal of the uncleanness of their flesh which results from the activities of the enmity within every man and woman, a removal process that is called sanctification when the saints will be cleansed and purified from sin to become the sanctuary of God in whom He will dwell for ever (Revelation 21 v 1-4). To teach repentant sinners of the reality of the promise of the covenant, God ordained first the Tabernacle of the Congregation, then the temple of David and Solomon and finally the temple that Jesus visited (Luke 21 v 5-7) to be as types and figures of the sanctuary of people in whom He would one day dwell. Desecration of this site (on the rock that Abraham proved his faith in the death and resurrection of the beloved Son of God) was an appalling assault on the faith of the repentant believer because of the blasphemy of the name of God (I AM) to whose honour it stood, and as a result of such desecration the repentant sinner would yearn for the day that the sanctuary of the temple of God would be finally restored to His honour for ever, which time would coincide with their own release from the uncleanness of their flesh so that they could realise their hopes to be as a living sanctuary of God as the fulfillment of the covenant of God. God has assured subsequent generations, through the work of Daniel, what the times of the outworking of this hope would be, by linking the symbols of His ‘periods’ (see chapter 53) with historical facts of their day, which would be as clearly known and familiar to them as ‘1967’ and ‘9/11’ are to this generation. One of these generations was the Jews who lived in Israel during the 170 year period before the birth of Christ and shortly afterwards, to assure them that the ‘local’ events and dates that they witnessed (or were told them ‘first-hand’) were portends of a greater fulfillment of the purpose of God, and - because of our access to historical records of those days – to assure us. Daniel was shown a vision from God about the continuing domination of the land Israel for the following 350 or so years after the fall of Babylon under whose domination the Jews then were. This vision showed him that the Babylonians were to be superseded by the Medo-Persians who would succumb to the Greeks. Of the Greek domination the leader (Alexander) would die quickly and would be succeeded by four generals of whom two would become dominant, one to the north of Israel and one to the south. History records this as true and adds that the two dominant powers persistently waged war against each other with Israel as the buffer. One man of the line of northern rulers was a particularly notorious despot who made it his mission to

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God humiliate the Jews in Jerusalem by desecrating the temple of God through forcing the offering of swine flesh and setting up a statue to Jupiter on the site of the Temple of God, on the rock of Mount Moriah, which was prophesied by Daniel as, “Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down. And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered” (Daniel 8 v 11-12). Daniel then received a confirmation of the fulfillment of the promises of the covenant of God, where God used one of the ‘periods’ He has chosen (for the benefit of those living in the last days) to mark out the times of His purpose that He has set when the saints will receive their reward of everlasting life. Daniel heard the following, “Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot? And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed” (Daniel 8 v 13-14) where the word ‘days’ in the Hebrew text means ‘mornings’ and ‘evenings’ which equate to real day-periods to half of the value of the time-span given – 2300 (1,150 days). It is reported that there are in existence three different ancient translations of the number as written in Daniel 8 v 14; 1) ‘2200 days’ by Jerome - who translated the Hebrew text directly into Latin with the help of local Jewish expertise; 2) ‘2300 days’ - as the result of the 4th century efforts to standardise a common text for all churches from the various Latin and popular Greek manuscripts (from which the King James Authorised version came); and 3) 2400 from an obscure 5th century Armenian translation (J Thomas MD, “Chronikon Hebraikon”, 1866, pp28-32; RC Shimeall, “Our Bible Chronology, Historical & Prophetic, 1859, p152). It is obvious that from these three different times ‘periods’ the meaning of the prophecy cannot be understood by the numbers alone, because any supporter of the three various ‘times’ would have equal rights to claim a chosen ‘period’ as the one on which to base an interpretation of the vision. It is the belief of all those who like Daniel submit to the absolute authority of God, and trust in the unswerving truth and accuracy of His word, that God overrules in the affairs of all nations with regard to the outworking of His purpose most especially where Israel is concerned, as Daniel told Nebuchadnezzer, “This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men” (Daniel 4 v 17). If we therefore look at the fulfillment of the vision from the viewpoint of local population of Jerusalem for whom the prophecy was originally intended and who experienced the outworking of the overruling hand of God, we will be able to identify the correct time period for the events that God directed and then we can understand the greater fulfillment of the prophecy based upon that early historical event which was given to Daniel for the people who were to witness it.

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God For this we will have to refer to the Jews who lived in the days of the notorious despot Antiochus IV Epiphanes (of the kings to the north of Israel who originated from the fragmented Grecian empire of Alexander) and whose particular reign of terror was in the period between 175BC to 163BC. This man desecrated the temple of God, forced the Jews to offer swine’s flesh on the altar dedicated to God and set up the statue of Jupiter in the temple (Jerome, “Commentaria in Danielum”; Translated by Gleason L Archer; Baker Books; 1958; pp 86-87). Antiochus IV Epiphanes took Jerusalem and laid it waste in 170BC and continued his destructive campaign by desecrating the temple on the 15th day of the ninth month, 168BC (I Maccabees 1 v 54; Smiths Dictionary of the Bible; Vol 1 p 75), offered swine flesh to Jupiter on the 25th day of the same month (Smiths Dictionary of the Bible; Vol 1 p 75) and lay the temple waste until the 25th day of the ninth month, 165BC (I Maccabees 4 v 52). With this 'local' knowledge it is simple arithmetic to work out the period of the ‘treading under foot’ of the sanctuary as shown to Daniel (8 v 13) in the same way as it is easy for us to work out local dates such as 1967 and 9-11 to the present day. There are two possible ways to do this, a) from the taking of the temple (15th day, 9th month, 168th year BC) to the cleansing (25th day, 9thmonth, 165 year BC), or alternatively b) from the incident of the swine's flesh (25th day, 9thmonth, 168 year BC) to the cleansing (25thday, 9thmonth, 165 year BC). The first subtraction gives 1095 days - which is 2190 evening and morning periods – and the other gives 1105 days - which is 2210 evening and morning periods – the periods of the vision. The uncomplicated mind will see that taking the average between the two alternative dates is 2200 periods (2210+2195 divided by 2) as the period that God overruled the affairs of the nation of Israel to be a type and a pattern of the greater fulfillment of the promises of His covenant when the temple site of Jerusalem will become the seat of His government over the whole world through Jesus Christ and the saints will be consecrated and fully sanctified as the sanctuary in whom God will dwell for ever. There remains only the simple transference of the historical type (a day for a year) by adding this period to the time of the date (as a ‘period’ for a year) from the desecration of the temple by Antiochus IV Epiphanes on the 15th day of the ninth month of the year 168BC to the final cleansing of the site of the house of God in Jerusalem to be as a house of prayer for all nations after the judgments of God on the unrepentant are over, i.e. 2200AD - 168BC. ********************* Chapter 56 The covenant of God through Daniel … the coming of the Messiah In accordance with the purpose of the record of the prophecy of the ‘2300 days’ (the coming of their Messiah), a ‘local population’ of Hebrew believers who lived during the latter part of the 170 years before the birth of Christ (from Antiochus Epiphanes and the Roman conquest) were to be additionally reassured of the fulfillment of the promises of the covenant of God in the raising up a savior (the Messiah), a man from

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God among their brethren, anointed with the Holy Spirit, who would redeem them from an eternal grave and fulfil all the work of the covenant of God. God told Daniel in the expected era of time (similar periodic time similitude’s) of the manifestation of this one, specifically to assure those repentant sinners living during the reigns of the Herod's and the Romans (36BC-28AD) that the purpose of God was about to enter a significant period of its duration - and by transference of the allotted similitude time periods - to assure those living in the latter days before the second coming of the Messiah that God is still ruling among the nations of the earth to bring His purpose to pass. Having understood the significance of the 70 weeks, Daniel was told, “Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times” (Daniel 9 v 25). There have been several ‘commands’ to restore and rebuild Jerusalem (for example, Cyrus 538BC, Darius 520BC, Artaxerxes 469BC & again in 456BC) and several implied commands (for example Nehemiah chapters 1 & 2, 444BC) where significant rebuilding was done without a specific command, and all of them can be claimed to be the one of the prophecy 'the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem' and all of which require an intimate knowledge of historical facts and dates beyond the average persons aptitude to search out. But prophecy was not recorded for historians, mathematicians, chronologists or psuedo-philosophers, it was recorded for simple uncomplicated people who were aware of the events of their local times (in the same way that we are of 1967 and 9-11 and other topical events) and could relate prophetic scripture to what they had witnessed and to what was common knowledge. As in the prophecy of the 2300 days, it is necessary for us to put ourselves in the position of the believers in those days and view topical events through their eyes. What is obvious from the prophecy is that the ‘seven weeks’ period was coincident at some point with the ‘threescore and two week’ period. If we take the ‘seven week’ period as a symbol of the Jubilee year (7 x 7 period: 49 periods = 7 years x 7 years: 49 years) then the 62 years must coincide with it at some point. In scriptural prophecy the end of the matter is always to be the focus, as that is where the hopes will be realised, it must also be remembered that they did not have BC & AD, that was a much later invention of the Christian era, so they (the faithful few Jews) in terms of their worship and faith would count in 'Jubilees' from its inauguration. Note that the birth of Christ was between the 29th and 30th Jubilee (approximately 1472 years) 22BC and 28AD respectively. Looking at the prophecy now from the then-locals, if the end of the 62 years is to coincide with a Jubilee year (their year 1500, our 28AD), then the 62 period would commence in 34BC (their year 1450) and locals would know (as we would have known) that there was a Jubilee in 72 BC (their 1400), another then due in 22BC (1450) and then 50 years later another - which by our BC-AD reckoning is 28AD. Local common knowledge was (this is not in prophecy but was a known fact of the times, as 9/11 is to us) that 14 years before the 22BC (1450) Jubilee year (36 years after the last one 72BC i.e. 1400), the Romans (commissioned by Herod) took

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Jerusalem by force and did considerable damage due to the rebellion of the Jews (this year - the 14th before 22BC Jubilee - was one of the ‘seven-year’ periods of rest and therefore a 'stepping stone' of the 50 year calendar of local people, see Josephus; “Antiquities of the Jews”; Book XV; ch1; p134). At the same time a large earthquake shook the whole of Palestine doing extension damage. Because Herod wanted Jerusalem and the land of the Jews as his territory to realise his grandiose plans of architectural expansion he began a massive rebuilding and restoration program involving designs, surveys, materials and physical work on a grand scale shortly after the fall of Jerusalem (when he had callously eliminated his personal enemies) which would be in approximately 34BC (1450). The scale of the work was so vast - both in Jerusalem and the land of Israel - that even the most humble labourer would have been aware of it, the temple was started in 18BC and built in 18 months and is described as an architectural masterpiece and detail embellishments were still being added 46 years later (John 2 v 20), such that it was admired by the Jews of the days (Matthew 24 v 1), the surviving remnants of which are the ‘Wailing Wall’ of today. Thus by local common knowledge (not by mathematics, chronology, histrographical knowledge) the coincidence of the time periods showed the local faithful Jews who were waiting for their Messiah that he would appear in their era - the era between 34BC (1450) (the commandment to restore) and 28AD (1500) (62 years). Thus Simeon was able to rejoice (Luke 2 v 24-35) as was Anna an old widow (Luke 2 v 3638) and the disciples were ready and looking for him in 28AD as it is written, “He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ” (John 1 v 41) and Nathaniel was told, “We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph” (John 1 v 45). It is with the dazzling light of historical hindsight and our intimate knowledge of present day events that we can rejoice in the latter day shadow of the prophecy and symbolism of the coincidence of the next and final Jubilee year (3500) and the end of the 62 ‘periods’ of that momentous event, that in like manner 62 years before the 70th Jubilee (3500) (and all that it portends - see previous chapters) in 1967 there was a similar and parallel event that triggered a massive rebuilding program in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Palestine which even today is a source of instability to world peace as prophesied by Zechariah, “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem. And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it” (Zechariah 12 v 1-3). ********************* Chapter 57 The covenant of God through Daniel … the assurance of history Daniel was given details of the outworking of the promises of the purpose of God which stretched forward way beyond his days into an era he could not possibly have

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God understood nor foretold without the inspiration of a Divine Creator who is not limited by time but knows the beginning from the end as it is written of Him, “Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure” (Isaiah 46 v 10). Daniel was told that there would be a resurrection of the dead, a judgement of those raised from the dead, and that some would receive everlasting life but the remainder would return to the grave with no release (Daniel 12 v 1-3). Because it was such a long time from his days he was told that this event - the focal point of all the faithful repentant sinners from Abel onwards - would be in an era of time where “many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased” (Daniel 12 v 4). Never before has that small and seemingly innocent passage had more truth, never before has those few words had more pregnancy than in the days of the 21st century, and accordingly, for the benefit of those living in these times, Daniel was given further ‘periods’ in the form of ‘days’ or cycles, “And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days” (Daniel 12 v 11-12). Like all the previous examples, no mathematical skills are required to understand the import of this prophecy, no detailed knowledge of the nations and empires lurking in the mists of history is required to ‘see’ the intended end, no calculations of the chronologists are needed to realise that God is ruling the affairs of mankind to the end that His name will be glorified in a people by the death and resurrection of one man the son of God. All that is needed is a simple addition of the two numbers (1290 + 1335 = 2625) where the ‘end’ time is the conclusion of the judgemental events to be started in the 70th Jubilee - which makes the ‘starting’ time as the year when Daniel was taken from the temple and worship he so loved, the time of the denuding of Jerusalem in the captivity of king Jehoachin - his princes, rulers, nobles, priests and artisans - by Nebuchadnezzer (602BC) (II Kings 24 v 12-14; II Chronicles 36 v 9-10) who replaced him with the despot Zedekiah and his worthless retinue who persecuted Jeremiah. It is our privilege to be assured of the truth of this prophetic period, and as a result to be able to comprehend some particular words of prophecy given to Daniel (Daniel 11 v 31) which identifiable words were specifically echoed and positively confirmed by Jesus Christ (Mark 13 v 14) and have become the key ‘stepping stone’ event and date between the two numbers (1290 and 1335), a specific event in history which is the ‘anchor’ point of the junction of these two times, a momentus pivotal event of these two added periods. ********************* Chapter 58 The covenant of God through Daniel … “…. time, times and half a time” We cannot understand the meaning of this prophecy without some comprehension of the magnitude of the power embodied within the name of God as was shown by the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God exaltation of God by the ‘man clothed in linen’ as it is written, “And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished” (Daniel 12 v 7). Lifting both hands to heaven is to direct all consideration and honour to God. There are two ways in which to measure the passage of time, the finite method and the infinite, where the finite is measuring in days and years where we (as limited by time) simply subtract or add two known dates measured by the passage of the sun, but the infinite is the way that God (who is not limited by time) marks the passage of His work. The finite method was used by God to reveal to Daniel the ‘weeks’, ‘days’, periods, cycles, and years of His work so that we can be assured from our mortal and dependent point of view that He - the immortal and independent – has not forsaken the earth nor the purpose contained in the promises of His covenant with mankind. The revelation of the ‘time and times’ is the infinite way and is the measure of the patience of God as He awaits the fruit of the the outworking of His covenant (James 5 v 7), it is the period and magnitude of His patience and not a measure of calendar time. The prophecy of ‘time, times and half a time’ measures the patience and long suffering of God as He seeks sinners to repent in the way that He has appointed as Jesus said, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Luke 5 v 32). This period is known only to God and cannot be measured by finite man, but God in His mercy has given other finite (specific) 'times' to assure those who do repent according to His requirements that He has not forgotten His promises ‘though He bear long with them’. The only measure that mortal man can put to these ‘times’ of the patience of God are that they are an opportunity to repent and to do any work God may move them to do. The Hebrew word ‘time’ used by Daniel denotes a specific time - particular event not a period itself, it is an event to which there is attached a period, a period of preparation or a cycle of events leading up to the event (time). For example the rise of the sun or the moon are specific events which happen at a precise 'time' but for that event to happen there must be a cycle of events (period) in preparation for it, as indeed there is - the waxing, the zenith, the wane, and the set - without which there could be no sunrise or new moon (with all that those events means in the teaching of the promises of the covenant of God). In similar manner this Hebrew word ‘time’ is also used in connection with a gathering together of an assembly at a specific ‘time’ a particular event such as the specific 'time' of a wedding ceremony - which 'time' is the culmination of a 'period' of planning and preparation but which 'period' of activity varies from wedding to wedding and indeed between the individuals invited to a wedding as some will take a long 'period' to prepare for the 'time' whereas some will take only a short 'period'. The period ‘time, times and half a time’ of the patience of God therefore varies from individual to individual, nation to nation and empire to empire, but the 'time' (event) at the end remains fixed, i.e. the marriage of the Lamb to his bride (the faithful).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The import of the words ‘time’ and ‘times’ in ‘time, times and half a time’ are therefore not specific numeric passages of time but 'periods' of preparation which vary according to the subject of the preparation, as indeed the time of preparation of the sun and the moon for their respective risings is different (24 hours for the sun and 28 days for the moon) and similarly for the bride and the groom and for the many individual guests - they all vary in their 'periods' of preparation. These figures of the ‘times’ of the sun and moon were the faith of the Psalmist, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun, Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race” (Psalm 19 v 1-5) where the ‘race’ is the ‘period’ of the preparation (in the patience of God) for the ‘time’ of the specific event of the marriage between Jesus Christ and the saints (the object of the covenant of God with mankind) where the Groom (Christ) and the many members of the body of saints each have a different 'period' of preparation or ‘race’ to run (I Corinthians 9 v 24-26; Hebrews 12 v 1). The ‘times’ given to Daniel were indicative of the patience of God - ‘time, times, and half a time’ - which numerically equates to 3 ½ ‘times’ (1 + 2 + ½ = 3 ½), but in terms of the ‘passage’ of time (i.e. periods from our finite point of view) they have no specific value (as will be seen) but rather a period of opportunity to prepare for a specific event (time) which has been set by God, a precise moment known only to Him, as Jesus said, “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father” (Mark 13 v 32), but nonetheless a ‘day’ (unknown to us) that is fixed as Paul said, “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead” (Acts 17 v 30-31). The fact that the ‘man clothed in linen’ lifted both hands to God in heaven directs us to look to God as the source of the meaning of these ‘time, times, and half a time’ and it is to His name that we are directed. The names of God are revealed to us through Moses as ‘I AM’ (Exodus 3 v 13-15) (from which we get the word ‘LORD’, Yehovah, Exodus 6 v 3), and God (EL) which Moses recorded as being known from the beginning (Exodus 3 v 6). The significance of the combination of these names – LORD God - was also revealed to Moses, “And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation” (Exodus 34 v 6-7). It is important to pay attention to the patience of God revealed in His name as He appeals and waits for mankind to respond to His love by 'visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation', not for reasons of

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God vengeance (as the children must not bear the sins of the fathers - Ezekiel 18 v 20) but for repentance, but has set a time when His patience will stop. From this revelation we understand that God is not an angry God who must be appeased with sacrifice and offerings, but a compassionate, kind, gentle and patient God who has said, “Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live?” (Ezekiel 18 v 23), and, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (II Peter 3 v 9) and “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon” (Isaiah 55 v 7). To reassure mankind of his patience in waiting for sinners to repent God has said that he will wait until the fourth generation of ‘them that hate me’. That God is patient with those who hate Him is difficult for us to comprehend until we realise the truth of the words of Jesus, “But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil” (Luke 6 v 35) which teaches us that the kindness of God is extended to both religious hypocrites - the most evil of sinners – and to the righteous, in order for them to repent. The variable length 'periods' associated with the ‘time’ are thus revealed to us as - ‘to the third and fourth generation’ (i.e. 1st, 2nd, 3rd & final 4th generation), the ‘time, times and half a time’, the 3 ½ periods which is the duration of the overall period of the patience of God as He works and waits for repentant sinners to reform and to continue in their reformation as James wrote, “Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain” (James 5 v 7) which refers to the ‘day’ (specific 'time') that He has appointed to fulfil His covenant, the ‘day’ that will come when God alone decides that the last ‘insignificantin-this-world’ saint has been prepared, at which 'time' the angels will have overseen the political and military powers of the nations in preparation for that 'time' which 'period' is described by Jesus, “…..and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled” (Luke 21 v 24) where the ‘times’ in the Greek are in fact 'opportunities' - a time 'periods' of the patience of God leading to a specific 'time' (the return of Jesus Christ), and are the measure of the patience of God. The covenant of God reveals that the anger of God is aroused after the 'period' of His patience is exhausted (a specific time known only to God) when His anger becomes as a consuming fire as Paul said, “For our God is a consuming fire” (Hebrews 12 v 29) and “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10 v 31). This was shown when the 'period' of His ‘time’ of patience was exhausted with the nation of Israel with whom He ‘waited’ for repentance for almost 2000 years (42 generations, Matthew 1 v 17, 12 + 24 + 6 - a divinely set 'complete' period - another 'time, times and half a time')) from the days of Abraham to the day of the crucifixion of Jesus and the subsequent Roman occupation and sacking of Jerusalem in AD70. At this specific ‘time’ of the cutting off of patience of God with Israel (the crucifixion of

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Jesus), the 'period ’ of the Gentiles opportunity to prepare for the 'time' of the fulfillment of His promise began (the 2nd coming of Jesus) as Peter said, “Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him” (Acts 10 v 34-35) and Paul said to the unrepentant Jews, “It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles” (Acts 13 v 46). The same long patience of God is now being shown to the Gentiles as forecast through Amos in the hope that they also will repent and join themselves to spiritual Israel by faith (as did Rahab, Ruth and Urijah) in that God through Amos repeated the promise of patience contained within His name but attached warnings of His wrath when His patience is exhausted. Amos wrote concerning the Gentile nations of his day - Syria, Gaza, Tyre, Ammon, Edom, Moab (all Gentiles), together with the Jews (Judah and Israel) by repeating the same words for each, “Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have threshed Gilead with threshing instruments of iron” (Amos 1 & 2). The same patience of God is waiting with the Gentiles and Jews while the few repentant sinners drawn from any race of mankind are reforming their characters according to the terms and conditions of the word of the covenant of God, after which the patience of God will be exhausted and His judgments will be exacted upon all unrepentant as described in the scriptures. Thus the specific ‘time period ’ of the Gentiles is coming to a conclusion in the specific ‘time’ that God has appointed - that only He knows - which was referred to by Paul when he wrote to the repentant Gentile believers, “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in” (Romans 11 v 25). What is God waiting patiently for – He who does not need the help from man or woman? The promise of His covenant is that He will create out of the race of mankind a family of willingly righteous people who will be reformed by obeying His word the outworking of which will be seen in their manner of life by producing the moral (Spiritual) fruits of the character that was seen in Jesus, whose natural spirit was converted to reflect the character of God (the Holy Spirit) in a man (I AM, Exodus 3 v 14-15; John 14 v 9), which moral fruits are described by Paul, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith. Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law” (Galatians 5 v 22-23). In return God will give them the gift of everlasting life to inherit this earth for ever, brought about by that beloved son whom God raised up out of the same race of human beings who - by his perfect obedience - killed the enmity within himself (human nature) in death, and thereby paid the price (his blood) of the redemption from death (by resurrection) of the unitary family to be ‘built up’ into a companion for him. These two – the son and the redeemed as his wife – will be united for ever - with he as king and they as corulers - after the figure of the first institution that God gave to Adam at the beginning

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God – the institution of holy matrimony – a marriage of absolute fidelity by solemn vow where the wife (Eve) was ‘built-up’ out of the man (Adam) (Genesis 2 v 21-25). God is patiently waiting - as the father of the groom – for this day when He will present the bride of His choice to His beloved son, as Jesus revealed in the parable of the marriage (Matthew 22 v 1-14). This was the faith of Daniel even though he said that he did not understand the figures of the ‘times’ but he was told for our assurance, “Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand. .. … But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days” Daniel 12 v 9-13). The hope of the promise (the ‘time, times and half a time’) of the covenant of God held by Daniel is further described by John who was shown complementary visions of the outworking of the purpose of God including the second coming of Jesus and the work that he will do, together with the climax of all the promises of God in the unifying wedding of Jesus Christ to his companion the saints (Revelation 19 v 7-8). This is the ‘time’ - the specific event - of the fulfillment of the vision that Daniel saw of the ‘man clothed in linen’ lifting his hands up to God and declaring where Daniel heard “And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished” (Daniel 12 v 7). The fulfillment of these words is seen in that John similarly heard, “And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven, And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer” (Revelation 10 v 5-6), where the Greek word for ‘time’ means opportunity. Daniel's vision was the period of the patience of God with every generation (then in prospect, now almost exhausted), and the vision of John was the specific 'time' when that 'period' of patience is finally terminated. The prophecy of ‘time, times and half a time’ measures the patience and long suffering of God as He seeks sinners to repent in the way that He has appointed as Jesus said, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Luke 5 v 32). This period is known only to God and cannot be measured by man, but God in His mercy has given finite times to assure those who do repent according to His requirements that He has not forgotten His promises ‘though He bear long with them’. The only measure that mortal man can put to these ‘times’ of the patience of God are that they are an opportunity to repent and to do any work God may move them to do, which duty was set as a standard in the work of Jesus Christ from his baptism till his death, a period, leading to a specific ‘time’ (his death - the final preparation for the marriage by sanctification) – of three and a half years - ‘time, times and half a time’ (1 year + 2 years + half a year) - and God has used this as a same figure as was done in Jesus for the outworking of the covenant of the law in the preparation of the saints. So we find reference to this pattern in the scriptures in that the children of Israel were

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God given 42 generations (12 + 24 + 6 - a divinely set 'complete' period - another 'time, times and half a time') to believe in their redeemer (Matthew 1 v 17), and in the Revelation the same opportunity will be given to the Gentiles to repent as 42 months (Revelation 11 v 2 - 3½ years, 12 + 24 + 6 - a divinely set 'complete' period - another 'time, times and half a time') referring to the time of the crucifixion of Christ until the ‘times of the Gentiles be fulfilled’ a 'period' of opportunity. When this 'period' is exhausted, a further ‘42 month’ 'period' to repent will be given to both Jew and Gentile during the judgments of God which will go throughout the earth (Revelation 14 v 6). After the example set in Jesus, the same figure (3 ½ years, 42 months, 1290 days) is used for the probationary work of the faithful during their mortal lives who are collectively represented in the Revelation by Moses and Elijah who were described as prophesying 1290 days (42 months, 3½ years, ‘time, times and half a time’) as it is written, “And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth” (Revelation 11 v 3-4). Again, the period of preparation of Gentile-faithful (after Christ) - was likened to ‘a time, times and half a time’ as it was again written, “And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent” (Revelation 12). Note, each saint is prepared over a different 'period' of time, some short, some long, according to what work God requires them to do in addition to their personal sanctification, but in all cases, the instant ('time') of their death will in fact (as far as they are concerned) be the 'time' of the fulfillment of the promises of the covenant of God, i.e. the return of Jesus Christ and the resurrection, as there is no consciousness of the passage of any time 'period' in death. This was the faith of Daniel although he did not understand all the details that we can see now, it was and is the same unchanged hope of the promise of the covenant of God which Peter referred to, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness” (II Peter 3 v 9-13). Thus the prophecy of the ‘time, times and half a time’ show us the divine viewpoint of the outworking of the promises of His covenant with mankind as a period of the patience of God (not a finite time period of ours in set years), instructing us that God is kind, merciful, gracious, abundant in goodness and truth, long suffering and patient – but He will not be waiting for ever. *********************

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 59 The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God through Hosea to Malachi The promises of the covenant of God are interwoven as a continuous thread of the gospel throughout the prophecies of Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi, which are recorded at the end of the Old Testament. In these smaller books, the overwhelming kindness of God in giving His covenant to mankind is evident as an oath of abundant mercy, as extraordinary patience, as a penetrating foresight in raising up a savior for mankind in Jesus Christ, as the balance of justice in His judgments in that the severity of His wrath on the unrepentant are counterbalanced by His mercy to the repentant, in that He will re-establish His righteousness on the face of the earth (as He created it) in a kingdom of God, and that in that kingdom the Children of Israel will be reunited as one nation under Jesus - their king - and that the Gentiles will be embraced in the covenant of God as were the Jews. Consideration of these prophecies follows in the next chapters. ********************* Chapter 60 The mercy of God through Micah, Amos, Joel, Jonah, Nahum and Malachi Entrance into the bond of the covenant of God unto salvation by resurrection from the dead is by the oath of baptism and that singular oath faithfully kept allows the repentant sinner to rejoice - despite the inward afflictions brought on by the acknowledgement of sin – that the mercy of God is the heart and soul of the promise of salvation embedded within His covenant. It was the same covenant that Micah embraced who also suffered the same afflictions that we do through sinfulness but who acknowledged the abounding compassion of the everlasting God as he wrote, “Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy. He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham, which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old” (Micah 7 v 18-20). As an assurance to the Gentiles in the last days Jesus repeated the same hope of the promise by showing us, through John, what the fulfillment of the mercy of God in the promise of His covenant will be in practical terms, “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away” (Revelation 21 v 4). God, in His mercy, wants sinners to repent from their sins and turn to Him, so that the glory of His name can be published as a witness to His faithfulness in all the earth and He has sent out this appeal to the Gentiles (through the translated scriptures) as the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God same appeal that originally went to Israel (forerunners of the Gentiles in the covenant) according as Amos was directed to speak, “For thus saith the LORD unto the house of Israel, Seek ye me, and ye shall live: .. Seek the LORD, and ye shall live; lest he break out like fire in the house of Joseph, and devour it, and there be none to quench it in Bethel. Ye who turn judgment to wormwood, and leave off righteousness in the earth, Seek him that maketh the seven stars and Orion, and turneth the shadow of death into the morning, and maketh the day dark with night: that calleth for the waters of the sea, and poureth them out upon the face of the earth: The LORD is his name. .. Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the LORD, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken. Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph” (Amos 5 v 4-8 & 14-15). This is the appeal of the gospel that Jesus taught and has been the same message since the beginning as Jesus said, “Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6 v 31-33) and, “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you” (Matthew 7 v 7). There is no respect of persons by God of who embraces the hope of the gospel of His covenant, providing they do so in the way that He requires, a truth which was confirmed by Joel, “And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call” (Joel 2 v 32) a truth that Paul later reaffirmed to the Gentiles, “For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10 v 1113). The conditions of the covenant for repentance that is acceptable to God has never changed in 6000 years despite the ways of men that make an outward show to cover the shame of sin by psuedo-sombreness and affected gravity as Adam and Eve did with their own covering of fig leaves. God has shown that the only way to benefit from His mercy is under the covering for sin that He has provided, a covering made by the humility of Jesus Christ - a man so meek and lowly that those he came to save considered him to be weak and ineffectual. In contrast to what is natural to man, but is the condition God requires from man in His covenant, Joel wrote, “Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil. Who knoweth if he will return and repent, and leave a blessing behind him; even a meat offering and a drink offering unto the LORD your God?” (Joel 2 v 12-14).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The effect of the covenant of God is not limited by geography or social status, because despite the overwhelming population of the earth and the wide differences in prosperity, there can never be a single man or woman who seeks the Lord of whom He will not be aware, and who He will bring to shelter under the canopy of His mercy by the forgiveness of their sins and the hope of the resurrection from mortality to immortality, as Nahum wrote, “The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him” (Nahum 1 v 7) which was also shown to Jonah who went far away for his homeland to the Ninevites to show them the widereaching span of the mercy of God as it is recorded of the impending destruction of Ninevah which was averted because of their repentance, “And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not” (Jonah 3 v 10). This was later confirmed by Paul who also went wide and far into the Roman Empire to preach the truth of the gospel of the covenant of God who wrote, “But if any man love God, the same is known of him” (I Corinthians 8 v 3). Such is the omniscient power of the mercy of God toward those who look to the grace of His covenant in gratitude for all that He has done for us. To those who do turn to God - in His appointed way - God reveals to them through the Holy Spirit what the ‘secret’ of His purpose of everlasting salvation for mankind is, as Amos wrote, “Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets” (Amos 3 v 7). This ‘secret’ has been understood by all the ‘few’ who have repented of their sins (according to the repentance God requires) since the beginning, a ‘secret’ that was later expounded by the apostles that God would be 'manifest in a mortal man' to provide (by the blood of that one shed in death) a way of salvation from the grave for a family of sons and daughters for God. It was by the love of that one man who would give his live for his friends that confirmed the commandment of the covenant of God that they should love each other as Jesus loved them - a righteous man who died in compassion for the forgiveness of the sins of sinners thus reflecting the love that God has for repentant sinners. Jesus said, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you” (John 15 v 13-15). This is the love of God to mankind in the promise of His covenant. We owe our very existence to the mercy of God which leads us to understand that His covenant for the future of mankind is a covenant of mercy. Therefore God is not an angry God who must be appeased with harsh judgments and callous sentences, nor has He ever needed to be placated by bodily disfigurement or social mutilation or isolation, but God has shown in His law - and in His covenant throughout the whole scriptures - that He is compassionate to the repentant, merciful to the contrite and pitiful to the broken hearted and He requires us to be like Him after the example of Jesus, as Hosea said to those who exacted the rituals – taken out of the law - upon those over whom they ruled, “For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings” (Hosea 6 v 6). Human nature has never changed and the same words were echoed by Jesus when the same burdens of oppression by religious ritual were being laden upon the people in his days, “But go

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Matthew 9 v 13) and “But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless” (Matthew 12 v 7). How can we not forgive our repentant fellow when we remember that God shows mercy to us? or how can we love those who count His mercy as worthless by taking it as a personal right? Jesus said that those who enter into and remain in the covenant of God will be few with respect to the mass of mankind through the generations (Matthew 7 v 14; Matthew 14 v 25; Luke 13 v 23) and so few in the last days that he questioned whether he will find the faith when he returns to the earth, “Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18 v 8). Therefore, those who repent in the way that God requires are (though the mercy of His covenant) as precious, priceless jewels which a man keeps and guards against all predators and thieves, so despite the efforts of vain psuedo-religious men and women to misguide vulnerable souls, despite the distractions of 21st century circumstances and technology, God will keep those that love Him as the apple of His eye (Psalm 17 v 8). This was the faith of Malachi in the everlasting covenant of God and is the gospel of the promise of God, “Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him” (Malachi 3 v 16-17) and in the Spirit of this promise of the covenant of God Jesus taught all disciples to pray, “.. .. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen” (Matthew 6 v 13). These repentant few will make up 'new' Jerusalem - the living city - in whom God will dwell as described by John in Revelation 21 in fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah which concerned the ‘desolate’ woman, the faithful who do not follow the excesses of the flesh, “O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted, behold, I will lay thy stones with fair colours, and lay thy foundations with sapphires. And I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones. And all thy children shall be taught of the LORD; and great shall be the peace of thy children. In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee” (Isaiah 54 v 11-14). The saints will be made up of Jew and Gentile unified into Jesus by sanctification of the Holy Spirit, and those moratls over whom they will reign in the kingdom of God will also be both Jew and Gentile, albeit separate peoples as Hosea wrote of them both, "And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God" (Hosea 2 v 23).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God For the promises of the covenant of God to be fulfilled and for Jesus and the saints to inherit the earth in a rule of universal peace over a mortal population it is necessary that the nations in their present materialistic form are changed. This change will be brought about by the judgementss of God through Jesus Christ when Jesus returns to the earth and prophecy of increased armaments and conflict between nations preceding the change from war to peace that will be the hallmark of the kingdom of God and was recorded by Joel, "Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruninghooks into spears: let the weak say, I am strong. Assemble yourselves, and come, all ye heathen, and gather yourselves together round about: thither cause thy mighty ones to come down, O LORD. Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about. Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great. Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision. The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining. The LORD also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the LORD will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel." (Joel 3).

********************* Chapter 61 Patience of God through Amos and Nahum Every generation has enjoyed the benefits of the creation and each has had a lifetime opportunity to appreciate them and to be in awe of the majesty of the singular God who created such harmonious perfection in order to allow their hearts to seek after Him. During each of those successive generations God has been looking for individuals who were moved by their appreciation of the power of God in creation and through His word - so that He could extend His extraordinary mercy to them by bonding them into His everlasting covenant, and through His word God has taught and showed by His power - His exceptional patience by waiting for individuals to repent from their repeated sins, and for successive generations to repent from the sins of the previous generations. Without that patience there would be no covenant unto salvation to hold fast to, as even in this day His patience with us is longer than we realise, but it will not last for ever, as God has appointed a day when He will complete this work as Paul taught (Acts 17 v 31). According to the revelation of the memorial of His name to Moses as a name expressing the power of His mercy, grace, long suffering, goodness and truth (Exodus 34 v 6-7) in His covenant, God revealed not only that He was patient but to what extent He is patient. It is written of the name of God “.. .. Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation” (Exodus 34 v 7)

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God where the ‘guilty’ are the unrepentant for - as William Tyndale originally translated the phrase - the sense is ‘no man is innocent before thee’. To ‘visit the iniquity’ is to patiently watch and wait as a long suffering benefactor to see if any sinner repents in time or by experience - or whether a generation repents of the sins of the parents - by the sensitivity of their conscience. This extraordinary patience - when exhausted at the ‘third and fourth’ period of patience - will indeed bring the wrath of God as Nahum prophesied, “God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies. The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet” (Nahum 1 v 2-3). Despite His ultimate wrath, the patience of God is extraordinary up until that time and in which patience all men and women have opportunity to turn to Him through the covenant, confirmed by the words of Peter that God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance (II Peter 3 v 9). In awe of his assurance of the patience of God in the covenant, Amos wrote of the exhaustion of the opportunity for repentance (termination of the patience of God) in both Gentile and Jew in his days - as even at the fourth opportunity there was no sensitivity to their sins, “Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof .. .. For three transgressions of Judah, and for four.. ... .. For three transgressions of Israel, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have despised the law of the LORD, and have not kept his commandments, and their lies caused them to err, after the which their fathers have walked” (Amos 1 & 2). This extended patience was shown both to the gentiles - Syria, Gaza, Edom, Moab, and to the Jews - Judah and Israel (Amos 1 & 2) until it was exhausted as Amos foretold. These ancient peoples are the representatives of stubbornness and rebellion in the whole of mankind to this generation, but the same patience of God has extended to every generation and to every individual in successive generations and will do so until that time spoken of by Paul, “Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead” (Acts 17 v 31). The scripture likens the patience of God to a husbandmen, a farmer, who patiently waits for the harvest of his labours but suffers many disappointments and grief through losses within his crop, but that his patience is finally justified when the fruit, adequate for his purpose is finally gathered in. James used this analogy, “Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain” (James 5 v 7).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 62 The Saviour on mankind through Jonah, Micah, Zechariah, and Malachi For the mercy of God through the grace of the promises of His covenant to be fulfilled, God purposed to raise up a saviour for all repentant sinners both Jew and Gentile. But God showed to Jonah that those repentant sinners would be ‘few’, as the fewness of a ships crew in the vast seas of the earth. These immense seas are used by God as figures for the turbulent and stormy effects of the enmity – the pride of human nature - in mankind as Isaiah wrote, "But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt” (Isaiah 57 v 20) and it was in these stormy conditions, a few pagan sinners – sailors with whom Jonah travelled - were brought to realise that despite all human endeavour by their efforts to save themselves, there was a one and only God - of all creation - would provide an escape from the deadly effects of the enmity by the death of a man that He would raise up out of the Jewish nation, a Hebrew of the children of Israel. So it is written of the experience of Jonah and the mariners in the extremity of their mortal peril, “I am an Hebrew; and I fear the LORD, the God of heaven, which hath made the sea and the dry land. Then were the men exceedingly afraid, and said unto him, Why hast thou done this? For the men knew that he fled from the presence of the LORD, because he had told them. Then said they unto him, What shall we do unto thee, that the sea may be calm unto us? for the sea wrought, and was tempestuous. And he said unto them, Take me up, and cast me forth into the sea; so shall the sea be calm unto you: for I know that for my sake this great tempest is upon you. Nevertheless the men rowed hard to bring it to the land; but they could not: for the sea wrought, and was tempestuous against them. Wherefore they cried unto the LORD, and said, We beseech thee, O LORD, we beseech thee, let us not perish for this man's life, and lay not upon us innocent blood: for thou, O LORD, hast done as it pleased thee. So they took up Jonah, and cast him forth into the sea: and the sea ceased from her raging. Then the men feared the LORD exceedingly, and offered a sacrifice unto the LORD, and made vows. Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights” (Jonah 1 v 9-17). Jesus Christ was that man – who died to save sinners (Jew and Gentile) from an eternal grave - who said to the Jews of his day who refused to repent, “For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matthew 12 v 40). Despite the unprecedented work of this one man in providing an escape from the tempestuous pride of human nature in mankind God revealed to Jonah that this one – the saviour of repentant sinners would consider himself to be none other than a 'worm' as recorded in the spirit of the Psalms, “But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people” (Psalms 22 v 6-18). This worm is the scarlet worm (coccus ilicis) the source of the scarlet dye which was used in the tabernacle to signify the blood of Jesus Christ and was now used by God to show Jonah that the race of man that God had created - and cursed because of their sin - who grow up and wither as the grass of the field (I Peter 1 v 24) while man continues to fill himself with the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God spirit of pride (Psalm 37 v 35). It was of this race that God would raise up a saviour who would show by his example that the unrelenting vigour of his natural spirit (the enmity) would be cut down and killed by the humble and lowly 'spirit' of the red 'blood' of the scarlet worm and would leave an indelible witness of his life blood in death even as the scarlet worm does upon the trunk of the tree that is withered. Thus the gourd - the ‘Palma Christi’ (the plant from whose fruit is the deadly poison ricin) sprang up to give shelter for Jonah, but withered in a day, struck down by the scarlet worm as it is written, “And the LORD God prepared a gourd, and made it to come up over Jonah, that it might be a shadow over his head, to deliver him from his grief. So Jonah was exceeding glad of the gourd. But God prepared a worm when the morning rose the next day, and it smote the gourd that it withered” (Jonah 4 v 6-7). Thus God revealed that the man (and the character of that man) by whom His purpose would be fulfilled would be despised and rejected, trivialised and blasphemed by mankind in accordance with the prophecy of Isaiah concerning Jesus Christ, “I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. Thus saith the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, and his Holy One, to him whom man despiseth, to him whom the nation abhorreth, to a servant of rulers, Kings shall see and arise, princes also shall worship, because of the LORD that is faithful, and the Holy One of Israel, and he shall choose thee” (Isaiah 49 v 6-7). By this man, the Gentiles would embrace a hope to be saved from the sentence of an eternal grave by the tender mercy of God in resurrection from mortality to immortality after resurrection from the grave. The man God raised up from the Jewish people - in whom He would fulfil the promises of His covenant by the redemption of a people from the grave - was not a man that would attract popular acclaim or be what is expected of a leader of men, because God had said through Isaiah, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD” (Isaiah 55 v 8). This man, Jesus Christ, was to be the only man who not only kept the law of God perfectly but fulfilled the spirit of law, in that he would show that the law was not intended to be a law of autocratic edicts and monotonous rituals but a law expressing the full power of the name and the innermost mind of God, a law of mercy to the repentant, requiring humbleness of mind and heart in the subservient and balanced judgement in it’s application, as Micah was told when he asked how he should serve God, “He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? The LORD's voice crieth unto the city, and the man of wisdom shall see thy name: hear ye the rod, and who hath appointed it” (Micah 6 v 7-9). In this revelation of the covenant of God, Micah was told that this man would be of the lineage of king David in that he was to ‘hear ye the rod’ referring to Isaiah’s words, “And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots” (Isaiah 11 v 1) in which way God identified the place of birth of the one in whom His covenant of mercy would be fulfilled, as Micah was also told, “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting” (Micah 5 v 2). Thus the hope of the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God promises of the gospel of the covenant of God was to be fulfilled through a mortal man who was born of the royal lineage to be king, but not a mortal king as Ezekiel was told of the secular kingship of Judah, “Thus saith the Lord GOD; Remove the diadem, and take off the crown: this shall not be the same: exalt him that is low, and abase him that is high. I will overturn, overturn, overturn, it: and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him” (Ezekiel 21 v 26-27) and Jesus publicly confessed, “My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence” (John 18 v 36). God has purposed that this man – the son of man (Luke 2 v 21-23) and son of God (Mark 9 v 7) – would not only be the king of Israel and the world (Isaiah 9 v 6-7), but that he would be a king and high priest – that he alone would be a mediator between subject-people and God. This principle was later explained in detail by Paul (Hebrews chs. 5, 6 & 7) but was shown to (Zechariah 6 v 12-13) and (Isaiah 11 v 1) by linking the BRANCH with the high priest (Joshua - that then was). Zechariah was shown in a vision the change from mortality to immortality that Joshua (the Hebrew name equivalent to Jesus - the BRANCH) would have, the fulfilment of the promise of the covenant that there will be a permanent change from a mortal human body to a body like that of the angels, “And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment. Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the BRANCH” (Zechariah 3 v 1-8). Jesus was the firstfruits of the race of mankind and it is the gospel of the promises of the covenant of God that there will by others to follow him, as Paul explained, “But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming” (I Corinthians 15 v 18-28) and later told of the hope of the others (I Corinthians 15 v 50-58). The covenant of God is that mortal man will be made immortal in His mercy by the power of God and in confirmation of this promise God revealed that Jesus Christ His son - after being made immortal - would remain with God (Psalm 110) while others were made ready for the same blessing, at which time God would send Jesus back to this earth as the Sun of Righteousness, to judge the unrepentant by the ‘heat’ of the power of the just anger of God but would bring the healing warmth of the love of God to those who have repented, “But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings” (Malachi 4 v 2-3). *********************

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God Chapter 63 Mercy of God in judgement through Habakkuk, and Zephaniah These judgements are judgements where the fierce anger of God is tempered with His tender mercy, but where the unrepentant will by no means be unpunished according to the patience of God described in the power of His name. Habakkuk was shown the awesome majesty of the future judgements of God but was shown the reason why those judgements will go forth, not because there was an angry God that needed to be appeased, nor because His patience had run out in vindictive fury, but simply because the time of the fulfilment of the hope of the promises of the gospel of the covenant of God had come, “Thou didst march through the land in indignation, thou didst thresh the heathen in anger. Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, even for salvation with thine anointed” (Habakkuk 3 v 12-13). In the heat of the judgements of God His protection of the faithful will never waver, who will enjoy the peace of the Kingdom of God on earth for ever, "For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea." (Habakkuk 2 v 14) Zephaniah was shown the ferocity of the same judgements (Zephaniah 1 v 14 - 18) but where the tender mercy of God will never be overshadowed but will (with the utmost sensitivity) provide a shelter for those who repent in the way that God requires – not as they choose to repent, “Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD's anger” (Zephaniah 2 v 3) and again, “Therefore wait ye upon me, saith the LORD, until the day that I rise up to the prey: for my determination is to gather the nations, that I may assemble the kingdoms, to pour upon them mine indignation, even all my fierce anger: for all the earth shall be devoured with the fire of my jealousy. For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the LORD, to serve him with one consent. From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia my suppliants, even the daughter of my dispersed, shall bring mine offering” (Zephaniah 3 v 8-10). Thus after the humiliation of Israel (until they recognise Jesus as their saviour) they will be regathered to live in the land God has chosen (of which the present regathering of Israel is a forecast Luke 21 v 29 - 33), and after the scourging of Gentiles they will similarly be gathered to the places of their inheritances, the diverse lands of the face of the earth to be ruled by Jesus Christ. ********************* Chapter 64 The Kingdom of God through Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Micah, Habakkuk, Haggia and Zechariah God has given mankind dominion over His creation (Genesis 1 v 28) but because of rebellion by choosing freedom from obedience to God, a time has been set for mankind to have that freedom of rule in beliefs and habit and is referred to as the

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God ‘times of the Gentiles’ (Luke 21 v 24) after which the covenant of God will begin it’s fulfilment in the return of Jesus Christ to this earth to establish the kingdom of God upon earth. In this universal kingdom the law and word of God will rule throughout the earth administered by Jesus Christ according to the words of Jesus spoken after his change to immortality but before his ascension into heaven, “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth” (Matthew 28 v 18). There is no power in heaven and earth other than the power of God, therefore Jesus spake of the prophetic fulfilment of the words spoken by Zechariah concerning the rulership of the Kingdom of God, “And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one” (Zechariah 14 v 9) foretold by the Psalmist, “Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession” (Psalm 2). The seat of that government will be on the mountain that God has chosen – mount Moriah showed to Abraham (Genesis 22 v 2) – as it is written, “But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it. And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem” (Micah 4 v 1-2). All the nations - from every land of the world - will go to Jerusalem to worship the Lord and join themselves in a covenant of obedience to the one Jew (Jesus Christ) who had been rejected by his people but was now their eternal benefactor, according to the prophecy, “In those days it shall come to pass, that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you” (Zechariah 8 v 20-23) where the ‘skirt’ refers to the hem of the garment which under the law was required to be a riband of blue to signify their walk in obedience to the covenant of God (Numbers 15 v 38-40), which hem the sick woman touched who was then healed of her sickness (Matthew 9 v 20 - 22). There will be no government buildings on that site such as are in existence now, the seat of government will be the sanctified house of God (Ezekiel 43 v 12), a house of prayer for all nations (Isaiah 56 v 6-7), a house so beautiful that it will transcend all other temples that have been built by man, it will be a natural house of pillars and palms, of porches and chambers, a house of prayer and meditation, a house hitherto that has never been envisaged by man, a house that God will establish as it is written, “I will fill this house with glory, saith the LORD of hosts. The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former, saith the LORD of hosts: and in this place will I give peace, saith the LORD of hosts” (Haggai 2 v 6-9). There will be a city of Jerusalem - a city associated with the house of God - not a bustling city of commerce and business, but a city of peace, a city that sets the standard for all cities throughout the world, a city with no violence, no crime, a city of

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God health and vitality, a city of respect for the old and care for the young, a city that God has chosen to place His name, as it is written, ”There shall yet old men and old women dwell in the streets of Jerusalem, and every man with his staff in his hand for very age. And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in the streets thereof" (Zechariah 8 v 4-5). All nations who come to the house of God to worship will learn of the perfect order of the city and the equity of it’s citizens under the law of God, as an example of what is required in the cities of their own lands, so the earth will be filled with respect for the ways of God according to the prophecy, “For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea. But the LORD is in his holy temple: let all the earth keep silence before him” (Habakkuk 2 v 14-20). Not only will Jerusalem be the city of world peace but the land around the city, from Egypt to Assyria, the Mediterranean to the Indian ocean will be a verdant garden, the garden of the Lord, full of pastures and abundant fruitfulness, like the Garden of Eden, as it is written, “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt. And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them. And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the LORD thy God” (Amos 9 v 11-15) and again, “And it shall come to pass in that day, that the mountains shall drop down new wine, and the hills shall flow with milk, and all the rivers of Judah shall flow with waters, and a fountain shall come forth of the house of the LORD, and shall water the valley of Shittim” (Joel 3 v 18). As Jerusalem will be the model city for the world, and the land will be the exhibition of the blessing of the Lord in creation, so the Jews - the Children of Israel - will be the example of how a mortal nation serves the Lord, how they worship God and how they keep the power of His name in mercy, grace, long suffering, goodness and truth, how they are kind to neighbours, generous to the disadvantaged and hospitable to strangers and Gentiles for it is written of them, “For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without teraphim: Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the LORD their God, and David their king; and shall fear the LORD and his goodness in the latter days” (Hosea 3 v 4-5). The Jews will be blessed with wisdom above all people, not because they are Jews but because they will reverence the son of God - Jesus Christ - whom they slew and because of the promise of God to Abraham. As a humbled people they will inspire all Gentiles to follow their wisdom, for it is written, “And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions” (Joel 2 v 23-29; Acts 2 v 17-21).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God The kingdom of God across the whole world will be wholly to the honour and glory of God, for this is the purpose of His covenant with man, where Jew will be humbled and built up into a nation of righteousness, and the Gentiles will realise that God chooses whosoever He will and they will be grateful for all the blessing that God has shown through the seed of Abraham by promise - Jesus Christ the Jew of the Children of Israel - according to the words of Paul who referred to the prophet Amos in his teachings, “After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up: That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things. Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world” (Acts 15 v 18). ********************* Chapter 65 Israel in the Kingdom of God through Zechariah and Hosea For the last 2000 years Israel have consistently denied the purpose of God in Jesus Christ His son, but unbeknown to them during those millennia they have been a witness to all nations that there is a living God who has a purpose with this earth. For the last 60 of those 2000 years they have been particular witnesses to the gospel of the promises of His covenant to their forefathers (and mankind through them) in their regathering and establishment as a nation in the land of their fathers to be as an ensign of a yet greater future establishment - the kingdom of God with the return of Jesus Christ (Matthew 24 v 29-35). When that kingdom is established, the fullness of the power of the name of God embedded within His covenant will be seen in Israel who will be blessed above all nations (Zechariah 2 v 10 - 13) when their final establishment in the whole of the land promised to Abraham (Genesis 15 v 18-21) is complete. In that kingdom they will be a beacon of light to all nations, illuminating the power of the name of God (mercy, grace, patience, goodness and truth ) fulfilled in them - in that God in His mercy has not destroyed them altogether (as most other nations of the past have been lost) but in His grace God has never forgotten His promises to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob a promise that they would see their ‘seed’ settled in their inheritance for ever. It will not be for Israel's righteousness but because of the faithfulness of God to His promises to Abraham. They are still ignorant witnesses to the fact that in His long suffering patience God has preserved the identity of the Jews during the 2000 years of their Diaspora and persecution despite their rejection of His beloved son Jesus Christ as their Messiah, and that in His goodness they have been - and are - blessed with the ability to match and exceed their Gentile rivals in the activities of life and that in His truth, God – their age lasting benefactor is faithful to all His promises. Israel's eventual acknowledgement of that Divine authority will be in the most unlikeliest of ways. When Jesus Christ returns they will be publicly humbled in front of all nations of the earth until they (individually and collectively) acknowledge that they killed the beloved son of God, Jesus Christ, in a mean and petty hatred borne about by envy (the lowest of human vices) and in that public humiliation God will

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God consolidate His boundless compassion on them so that they can show the world that there is a living, merciful and compassionate God, as it is written, “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn” (Zechariah 12 v 10). Thus will be fulfilled the words of the prophets, “And I will sanctify my great name, which was profaned among the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them; and the heathen shall know that I am the LORD, saith the Lord GOD, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes” (Ezekiel 36 v 23). Thus will be laid the foundation for the admission of both mortal Jew and Gentile nations into the kingdom of God, the Jew first by purging of their sins through their admission of the gross errors and repentance due to the judgments of God on them, and then the Gentiles by heartfelt acknowledgement that God is the only God - creator and sustainer of all the earth, together with moral and physical prostration before God (Revelation 14 v 6 -11). Coincident with the appeal for repentance and safety will be the judgments of God on all nations which will be severe for it is written, "The great day of the LORD is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the LORD: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly. That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, A day of the trumpet and alarm against the fenced cities, and against the high towers. And I will bring distress upon men, that they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against the LORD: and their blood shall be poured out as dust, and their flesh as the dung. 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 shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land." (Zephaniah 1 v 14 - 18), and as a result there will be a reduction in the number and population of nations, "And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts" (Zechariah 14 v 16 - 19). The law of God will be the universal law and will be administered from Jerusalem and will flow as a river to all parts of the world as it is written, "And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be." (Zechariah 14 v 8 - 11). Under willing submission to the administration of this law, all nations will seek God through the mediation of the universal king, Jesus Christ (the only perfect Jew), "Thus saith the LORD of hosts; In those days it shall come to pass, that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you." (Zechariah 8 v 18 - 23). The Jews will become the example to all nations of the only repentance that is acceptable to God, an example for all nations to follow as the judgments of God take hold on the earth, and some Gentiles will follow them - not because they are superior - but because they will be humble and contrite before their God, and He will bless

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God them as a result as it is written, “O Israel, return unto the LORD thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity.. .. Take with you words, and turn to the LORD: say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously: so will we render the calves of our lips.. .. I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely: for mine anger is turned away from him.. .. Who is wise, and he shall understand these things? prudent, and he shall know them? for the ways of the LORD are right, and the just shall walk in them: but the transgressors shall fall therein” (Hosea 14 v 1-9). But this will not be before all prophecy is fulfilled particularly in which Israel is involved. They continue to hold their rulership and development of Jerusalem despite opposition and condemnation of most nations, but however they rightly love that city of their ancient fathers it will become - and remain - a witness to the active propose of God, not a 'city of peace' but a "burdensome stone", "Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem.And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it." (Zechariah 12 v 1 - 3). Thus Jerusalem remains a 'burdensome stone' to all who attempt to mediate in the disputed territory and will do so until the retuirn of Jesus Christ. The promises of the purpose of God that all believers since Abel have held concerns the provision of a redeemer from an eternal grave, from mortality to immortality, without which hope all lived in vain. The promises were fulfilled in Jesus, born of the mortal race of humankind, who lived subject to all the temptations and died as every other man, but to whom after his resurrection from the dead, God changed his nature from mortality to immortality. A significant prophecy about this hope (later fulfilled John 20 v 17, Luke 24 v 36-40, Acts 1 v 9-11) was given to Zechariah. "And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment. And I said, Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the LORD stood by" (Zechariah 3 v 1 - 5). Zechariah was the prophet who accompanied the first return from Babylon to Jerusalem (538BC) towards the conclusion of their 70 year exile from the Temple of God (517 BC). Joshua co-led the return to the land and city of the promises with Zerubbabel (Ezra 2 v 1-2). Joshua was rightful High Priest of the lineage of Aaron and Zerubbabel was of the royal line of king David (Matthew 1 v 12-13). These two leaders acted as one man (Ezra 3 v 1-2) in an important but entirely finite mortal way, whose united zeal foretold of the greater deliverance from captivity of the enmity (prefigured in Babylon) to the fulfillment of the promises of eternal life on earth (the House of God in Jerusalem). This was the hope of Zechariah and he was reassured in the turmoil of the times that his redeemer would come and the prophecy (above) was the reassurance that Joshua (Jesus)- prefigured in Zechariah's contempories - would lead his people from captivity of sin to eternal deliverance - by

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God having his nature changed from mortality (the filthy garments) to immortality (a change of raiment) to become the firstborn of a new righteous generation (I Corinthians 15 v 23-28), and that Satan (his own human nature, the enmity) would be his vanquished mortal enemy. That there were two men in the 6th century BC return from captivity, prophecies that the roles of king and priest were to be unified in the one Redeemer yet as then to come. Thus Jesus was born of the house of David of a mother who was of the lineage of Aaron, but natural lineage is not just the purpose of God in Jesus, God required that His son would be king in his own right and that meant taht he was to be a king first over his own nature by vanquishing that enmity by the commands of God, and that as a result God would elevate him to become the highest High Priest of all time, a ever-living mediator between God and man (I Timothy 2 v 5, Hebrews 6 & 7). Jesus fulfilled the promise of God in his death on the cross, after which God faithfully fulfilled His promise and raised him from the dead and then gave him eternal life, He set him at His own right hand (Psalm 110 v 1-4), as a High Priest-mediator to receive prayer from his faithful and offer it to God while he awaits his return to claim the earth as the rightful universal King and Priest. ********************* Chapter 66 The Gentiles in the covenant of God through Hosea, Joel, Jonah, Zechariah and Malachi The Jewish people were the custodians of the hope of the promises of the covenant of God by descent of birth through Abraham, Isaac and Jacob with isolated Gentiles being embraced into the hope of salvation from an eternal grave. This lasted up until the time of Jesus Christ when the custody of the covenant was removed from them and given to the Gentiles with isolated Jews being embraced in the hope. This change of custody was not due to an impetuous and angry God at the time of the death of His beloved son at the hands of the Jews, but because God purposed it to be that way due to the Jew's repetitive rejection of the law and word of God throughout the years between Abraham and Christ. To foretell the truth of His magnamity to all repentant sinners irrespective of what nationality they were, God sent Jonah - not to the Jews but to the Gentiles at a time when Israel had the custody of the hope of the promises, as it is written, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me” (Jonah 1 v 2), to which Jonah went and whose citizens repented to be forgiven by God - despite their pagan sins - and were spared from impending destruction, to be as an example that the time would come when another man (Jesus Christ) prefigured by Jonah would bring hope of salvation to the Gentiles. It was therefore the determined purpose of God to give the hope of the promises of the covenant to the Gentiles in the good time of His purpose, as Hosea wrote, “and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God” (Hosea 2 v 23) - words which were affirmed by Paul who had the specific task of beginning this work of giving the Gentiles the hope of salvation, as he spake “For with the heart

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10 v 10-13) repeating the words that God had given to Joel, “And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call” (Joel 2 v 32). According to the word of God through Malachi, the fame of the name of God has spread to all parts of the globe by the teaching of Christianity as a result of the rejection of the covenant of God by the Jews, as it is written beforetime, “For from the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same my name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place incense shall be offered unto my name, and a pure offering: for my name shall be great among the heathen, saith the LORD of hosts” (Malachi 1 v 11). The fullness of the power of the name of God, however, will not be universally seen until Jesus returns to the earth, because Jesus said that until that time there will be many deceivers who proclaim that they are Christ – or Christians – but whom he will not recognise (Matthew 24 v 5 , (Matthew 7 v 21-23). When Jesus returns to the earth, there will be a universal unadulterated preaching of the gospel of the promises of the covenant of God in all languages by the glorified saints during the course of the judgements of God upon the unrepentant (Revelation 14 v 1-7), and it will be Jew and Gentile that will respond to that gospel in order to be allowed into the kingdom of God as mortal subjects of the Lord Jesus Christ and his saints according to the prophecy, “And many nations shall be joined to the LORD in that day, and shall be my people: and I will dwell in the midst of thee, and thou shalt know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto thee” (Zechariah 2 v 11). All nations will destroy weapons and military power, as it is written of the rulership of Jesus, "And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more" (Micah 4 v 1-3). The poulations of the earth will revert to the pastoral life that God created in the beginning, there will be no industrialisation and consumerism , but a life of pastoral peace, as it is written, "But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the LORD of hosts hath spoken it. For all people will walk every one in the name of his god, and we will walk in the name of the LORD our God for ever and ever" (Micah 4 v 4-5). ********************* Chapter 67 The Covenant of God in Old and New Testament There is only one God (Ephesians 4 v 4-6) and one covenant of that living God, a covenant of hope that God has extended to mankind by the shed blood of a redeemer

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God (Jesus Christ) - a hope of resurrection from the grave and change of nature to life everlasting and inheritance of this earth for ever. This covenant (given to Adam and Eve after their sin) has never changed despite differing manifestations of it, nor will it change but will be fulfilled according as it is written of God, “So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” (Isaiah 55 v 6-13). Adam and Eve learned of a future son of their lineage who would kill the enmity (human nature) within himself (Genesis 3 v 15) to provide a 'covering' to blot out sin and a 'washing' to take away sin. To confirm this they were shown that the covering for the shame of their sins could only be by the shedding of blood (Genesis 3 v 21). Abel was shown that only by shedding blood could hope in the covenant be realised (Genesis 4 v 4) for which he was hated and killed. Noah was shown that a 'vessel' of safety would redeem a family from the judgments of God on the wicked, he built a vessel and sealed the planks with the resinous-sap to provide a water-tight covering the life blood of the tree that made the ark. He learned that Jesus Christ would be that 'vessel' in whom many would be saved, and whose faith was proven in death by the shedding of his blood as he was 'cut down' in crucifixion. After being saved from those judgments, Noah responded by shedding the blood by sacrificing particular animals chosen by God to demonstrate his faith in the covenant of God that the covenant of redemption would be by the price of blood from the one who God chose. Abraham expressed his faith in the hope of the same covenant in that he was ready and prepared to shed the blood of his only begotten beloved son (Genesis 22) in obedience to God, for which God gave him assurance that his redeemer would likewise be the only beloved son of God who although of the same human nature (as 'caught in a thicket') he would in death overcome Satan - his own nature - the enemy of God to make a way unto salvation from the grave (Hebrews 11 v 17-19). Isaac shared the faith of Abraham in that he was willing to die by the knife of his father by shedding his blood if God so required it of him in order to pay the price of redemption, but he continued in faith after that it was showed that another son would be provided, represented by the ram caught in a thicket. Jacob shared the same faith in the covenant of God in that it promised a hope of being united to God for ever through one who would 'bridge' the gulf between God and man (Genesis 28 v 12-15), (John 1 v 51), as a result he later wrestled with an angel all night to receive the blessing of God who gave him the name of Israel (Genesis 32 v 24-31). Joseph his son followed after never forgetting the gospel of the promises of the covenant of God that even though his life has been effectively shed in being sold into Egypt (Genesis 37 v 31-35) where he grew to save his family in the time of their mortal peril, as a figure of his future redeemer who would save him from the famine of death due to his own nature. Moses had faith in the covenant of God in that he refused the honour of the Pharaohs' and was given the law of God (in which was described the fullness of the covenant of God) to give to a family called by the name of God (Israel) a law that was given and accepted by an oath of the covenant confirmed by the sprinkling of blood (Exodus 24

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God v 8, Hebrews 9 v 13-14). This manifestation of the one covenant of God in the law of the ten commandments written in two stones provided by God was broken by Israel as soon as it was given (Exodus 32 v 19) where-upon two more tables of stone were hewn from the ground by Moses upon which God then wrote the testimony of the covenant, teaching that the one who would bring salvation by the fulfilling of the law of God would be taken out of the 'earth' of mankind, that is, a mortal man in whose heart and mind God would write his law. This manifestation of the covenant, sealed with the blood of the sacrifices of the law, was described by the Psalmist as “The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether” (Psalms 19 v 7-9), yet despite this Israel continued to break the oath of the covenant sealed by the blood of animals (Isaiah 65 v 2-5) such that a new testament of the covenant of God was required to be introduced by the blood of one man as the law has taught, according as was written, “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” (Jeremiah 31 v 31-34). For the work of the new testament, John Baptist was raised up by God to prepare the way for that one man, the Lord Jesus Christ, as it was written, ”Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts” (Malachi 3 v 1). This man (the Lord Jesus Christ in the covenant of God) fulfilled all that was written in the law, the commandments, the figures of the tabernacle, the offerings, the priestly order by the shedding of his blood upon the cross, as Paul later wrote, “For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance. For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth.. .. So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation” (Hebrews 9).

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The gospel of the promises of the covenant of God By the blood of the new testament of the one covenant of God, salvation is brought to all Gentiles in the world, who by the vow of baptism into the death of Christ (Romans 6 v 3-7) sware an oath to enter into that one covenant of God and keep within it’s bounds by continual baptism of the Holy Spirit by weekly renewal of that vow in eating of bread and drinking wine which symbolize the body and blood (respectively) of Jesus in the new testament as he said of the bread "And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body." (Mark 14 v 22) and of the wine, “For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins” (Matthew 26 v 28) and “And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many” (Mark 14 v 24). By faith in this blood – inseparable from faith in the bread - by allowing the Holy Spirit to rule in the heart so that the fruits of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5 v 22-23) are increasingly seen in the life there is sanctification unto salvation from the sentence of an eternal grave, as it is written - (of those whose baptism was a meaningful vow of repentance to mortal combat with the enmity in themselves - who have eaten faithfully of the bread of his body and drunk sincerely of the wine of his blood in renewal of that vow - who have allowed the Holy Spirit to overcome their own nature by applying the word of God to themselves - who have continually repented of their sins in the way that God requires - and who have lived and died in that faith), “After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindred’s, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes” (Revelation 7 v 9-17). The fullness of the gospel of the hope of the promises of covenant of God will be seen in the earth by the unification of Jesus Christ to his companion - like a husband to a wife - and the unification of both of them to God for ever as it is written, “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God” (Revelation 19 v 7-9), and “And there shall be no more curse: but 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 shall be in their foreheads” (Revelation 22 v 3-4) *********************

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