95 THESES FOR THE RE-FORMATION (Continued)

Cain (not Adam) is the type of the damned
Thesis #6  of 95: Cain rather than Adam is the type of the damned or reprobate who is later described in the New Testament as derived from the Evil One (Greek: ek tou ponerou)

BIBLICAL REFERENCE

Be not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother’s deeds were righteous (1Jn3:12)

COMMENTS

These first few theses focus on Genesis, and it should already be evident that Cain features as much as his father Adam. Cain’s parent Adam is several times referred to in Paul’s epistles. For at the human level it is through Adam and his partner Eve that sin came into the world. “For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive” (1Cor15:22). Adam is our federal head; his fate is our fate – but that is the point being made in this thesis. We are in Adam, not Cain. Quoting from The Little Book of Providence on the subject:

The historical error of mainstream Christian theology since its systemization in Late Antiquity has been a failure to distinguish between disobedient Adam and his psychopathic eldest son. That was not the case amongst the earliest Fathers such as Irenaeus [ref1] and Origen [ref2] who classified fallen Adam with righteous Abel not Cain. Adam was the first man to be created; Cain the first to be born of woman; the one was the federal head of humanity and the progenitor of “the body of this death”, the other was the type of the damned, being those who through an act of free will leave the intuitive path of sound reason and deference to God’s still small voice speaking through the conscience “to walk in the way of darkness, and rejoice in evil and delight in the waywardness of the wicked, whose ways are perverse and devious” (Prov2:13-15). Sound reason, even the spiritual faculty of conscience will not instruct a man how to be a disciple of Christ – His demands go well beyond such faculties and require special revelation, spiritual empowerment and the means of sanctifying grace. However, innate human reason, informed by conscience is effectual and normative regarding what is to be pursued and what is to be avoided in the cause of being humane, and that is the basis upon which everyman is judged, being without excuse if he has opposed and rejected the light that he has received (Mt25:31-46). Cain did just that, killing his innocent brother in cold blood and so was cursed, whilst Adam had never received such a curse. Cain became alienated from such light, Adam did not. Cain came under Satan’s mastery, Adam did not. Cain was a plant of the devil, Adam a lost child of God: for whom Christ came to die – providing pardon for the many and fulness of salvation for those destined to partake in His life (Rom5:10; Rom8:29; Jn6:53-54).

From: The Little Book of Providence chapter two

Ref1:  Irenaeus against heresies Book III chap. 23 (5)

Ref2: Origen de Principiis Preface (4) 194 Mt25:31-46

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THESES FOR THE RE-FORMATION #3-5

Cain and Abel offering sacrifices

Re – Cain and Abel: mankind’s representatives within the eluded universal covenant

#3 of 95 Abel was not “saved” by anticipating Calvary when he sacrificed an animal (Gen4), he remained justified within a de facto covenant for fallen humanity by exercising faith/faithfulness, offering the best of his produce with a good conscience

#4 of 95. Cain defaulted from this Universal Covenant after killing his brother

#5 of 95. Such an inclusive covenant is indicated by the fact that Cain was neither entirely alienated from God nor cursed by Him until after his fratricide

Biblical references

Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is too great to bear! 14 Behold, You have driven me THIS DAY from the face of the ground; and from Your face I will be hidden, and I will be a vagrant and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.” 15 So the Lord said to him, “Therefore whoever kills Cain, vengeance will be taken on him sevenfold.” And the Lord appointed a sign for Cain, so that no one finding him would slay him. 16 Then Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden (Gen4:13-16)

Comments

As explained in thesis #2, whilst there may be a prophetic connotation to Christ’s Passion, the idea that Cain and Abel were expected to anticipate a future Sacrifice for sin by killing an animal is unsustainable; cultic sacrifices were not clearly established as a religious system until the Law of Moses. Even Jesus’ own disciples had no idea that their Master and Saviour of the world was to die and become a Sacrifice for sin, still less would the immediate descendants of our first parents have such an understanding. Apart from which, no one in the Old Testament is declared to be justified based on offering an animal sacrifice, so Abel cannot be an exception.

Abel exercised faith and produced fruit in the form of good works. Abel didn’t “get saved”, he remained accepted (justified) and was acknowledged as righteous within the Universal Covenant. Cain reprobated (became rejected) and was brand-marked for Satan, and as a warning to those who would cross him. That was not at the point he failed to offer his first-fruit in sacrifice, for although God was not pleased with his offering, He still held out an olive branch. Rather he was called to account immediately he had killed his brother, showing himself to be psychopathic: devoid of conscience or compassion – a child of the devil (1Jn3:12).

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THE 95 THESES OF THE RE-FORMATION #2

Cain and Abel’s sacrifices
THESIS#2 0F 95 – “Cain and Abel as the first humans to be born of woman were representatives within a de facto universal covenant that has been eluded by theologians”

BIBLICAL REFERENCE: If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, Sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him (Gen4:7 Masoretic – King James Version)

COMMENTS: “Will you not be accepted?” might also be translated “will your countenance not be lifted?” which is utilized by some versions of the Bible. The King James Version quoted above rightly understands “sin” to be referring to a person (the Sinful One), for he is lying or crouching (Hebrew: rabats) at the door and has a desire to control Cain. Sin per se could hardly be at the door in Cain’s case, it’s already in Cain’s heart and about to wreak havoc. Cain is described elsewhere as “of the evil one”, confirming that the Sinful One was indeed at the portal of his soul and was able to master Cain and thereby control him, in fact own him. From the human perspective, that would not have been so if Cain had responded differently to the challenge JHWE presented to him in Gen4:7, so the verse effectively reflects a Universal Covenant for fallen humanity; for Abel was fallen but he was accepted. The focus of the Cain and Abel story which is drawn upon in the New Testament is not concerning Abel’s salvation but Cain’s reprobation (rejection), indicated by the vital yet typically glossed references to “this day” and “now” regarding the elder brother’s fate.

Whilst there may be a prophetic connotation to Calvary, the idea that Cain and Abel were expected to anticipate a future Sacrifice for sin by killing an animal is unsustainable; cultic sacrifices were not clearly established as a religious system until the Law of Moses. Paul, James and the writer to the Hebrews make it clear why Abraham had been counted as righteous, being a belief in the God he had encountered evidenced by obedience, in his case that he would be rewarded with a great family. No one in the Old Testament is declared to be justified based on offering an animal sacrifice, so Abel cannot be an exception. Abel exercised faith and produced fruit in the form of good works. Abel didn’t “get saved”, he remained accepted (justified) and was acknowledged as righteous within the Universal Covenant; Cain reprobated (became rejected) and was brand-marked for Satan, and as a warning to those who would cross him, but that was not at the point he failed to offer his first-fruit in sacrifice, for although God was not pleased with his offering, He still held out an olive branch. Rather he was called to account immediately he had killed his brother. The issue was never the brothers’ religious observance per se for as always God delights in compassion more than religious offerings as Jesus Himself affirmed. This historically eluded universal covenant is fundamental to the misrepresentation of divine providence within Western theology.

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THESES FOR THE RE-FORMATION #1

An earlier version

The next series of posts will set out and briefly comment on each of the 95 theses that summarize key outcomes from The Little Book of Providence.

THESIS#1 0F 95 – “Human beings were made in the image of God and even after the fall are to be regarded as such”

BIBLICAL REFERENCE: Gen9:6: Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed; For in the image of God He made man

COMMENTS: Given that God is invisible, the image referred to in Genesis cannot be God’s appearance but His NATURE. That nature has been besmirched by the fall, but as Gen 9 indicates, by no means obliterated. Every virtue that man is still capable of exhibiting such as compassion, mercy, a sense of fairness and justice, humour, tolerance and the desire for the wellbeing of others, is derived from God. The point is, God possesses ALL of the above, and to a superlative degree. Any theology that infers through its eschatological outworking that God’s nature is alien to that of man when he is at his best (as perfectly portrayed by Jesus, even whilst in human flesh – Jn14:9) needs to be revisited.

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BY THEIR FRUITS

It is nine years ago almost to the day (Pentecost Sunday 2013) that I started writing my book, having given up driving London buses a few months earlier, mainly for health reasons. About six weeks into the writing, I had the second of two extraordinary encounters with the Holy Spirit. The first had been 14 years earlier whilst I was at bible college training for the Evangelical ministry, as a result of which within a couple of years I had converted to Catholicism. Regarding the second encounter, my ten-year electronic diary indicates that it was in December of that year that I received the first “vocal phenomenon” voicemail message. It consisted of little more than agitated banging and scraping noises. I thought at the time, “if someone is trying to scare me, they could surely do better than this?” Then, after a few more of the same, it struck me that these were not direct messages from an individual but were themselves recordings – from a place with limited facilities. In those early days such messages were left on my BT phone, later migrating to my mobile, quite often superimposed over messages from my closest friend. She was not aware of them until I played the voicemail recording back to her. They progressed over the following months and years to recordings of voices, not always saying much that was intelligible but sounding angry, mocking, and hateful.

As previously explained, these phenomena began before I had published anything, even a blog or tweet concerning the nature of what I was writing, so it cannot be put down to aggrieved readers, rather (dare I say) to an enraged establishment. In the latest more sophisticated multi-layered recording, the first and only I have published, not only my detractors but those I understand to be their captors (the compilers of the recordings) can be heard, more particularly a cheery “Hello there, Charton”. Taking the series of recordings as a whole (the earliest of which were lost/destroyed when I had a nervous breakdown in 2016) I have become more convinced of their other-worldly origins. Especially so after the one recently published, containing as it does what I believe to be the voice of a deceased person known to both me and the aforementioned close friend. In view of what I wrote in the previous post concerning the nature and purpose of the establishment in question and the manner of his greeting, this does not unduly distress me. In terms of publishing such a recording, I certainly hesitated, realizing it effectively proves nothing apart from for myself. For, after all, it could have been something I had constructed. I know I didn’t but those who hear it don’t. Likewise, my whole testimony could be a web of deceit whereas it’s the God’s honest truth, but how to prove it? In terms of my testimonial post I have filled out some of the details of times and places so that at least those who have known me in the past can verify that.

The need to test

As previously stated, I believe the litmus test for the validity and prophetic nature of the biblical synopsis I’ve set out in The Little Book of Providence is its ability to reconcile Scripture. But that has to be for others to determine, requiring patient scrutiny, some analytical skill and, above all, the rare ability to put aside all preconceptions. But there is a further test that can be applied which Jesus, no less, recommended.

 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree brings forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree brings forth evil fruit” (Mt7:15-17).

I do not primarily regard myself as a prophet. I thought that might be the case in view of what I appeared to be involved with, but then came the names. You might consider at this point, if I were deluded myself or intended to deceive others, why would I have demonstrated from this mysterious recording that I have been addressed by two new names: Charton (=coachman/busman) and more frequently יִצְחָ֔ק aka Yitshak aka Isaac” (= he who laughs), neither of which one would associate with end-time prophecy? Nevertheless, I am claiming to have received prophetic insights, which if acted upon would require substantial numbers to put at least as much trust in me as many did in the likes of Augustine and Luther in the past. And whilst they at that point were already ecclesiological colossi, I am a retired busman (earlier a civil servant). Not that such things count for much with God, who determined that the first people to receive a heavenly announcement concerning the Good News of Christ’s birth were not the ecclesiological establishment but shepherds on a hillside. Such can be the divine protocol (Mt11:25).

Given that most who read this will not be acquainted with my character, one might consider instead what is likely to be the fruit of my labours should they fulfil their intended aims. Even in the case of the One who came to save the world from sin and the devil, He acknowledged His intended mission would have its downside:

Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. It will turn a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a person’s enemies will be the members of his household [Mt10:34-36]. 

Likewise, a lesser ecclesiological mission would certainly divide opinions within Christian families. Yet the aim is to reconcile the children of the Reformation with their ecclesiological fathers, hence my surprise concerning the names (Mal4:5-6). [Note, in view of Jesus’s statement quoted above, Malachi could hardly be referring to the heralding messenger’s reconciliatory task as “inculcating happy families”. The “fathers and children” must have a prophetic meaning and Christendom as it has panned out fits the bill perfectly].

Means to an end

As was the case with Jesus’ mission, what ultimately matters is the outcome, however much upheaval (and in His case suffering) might be brought about achieving it. As I have been outlining, the Saviour’s task was not just to provide pardon for human sin but a means of ongoing sanctification for those God would give Him as “a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, to proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvellous light (1Pet2:9). Such were to be the first fruit of God’s new created order (Jam1:18). They, and in due course the rest of redeemable humanity, were not only to be restored to Adamic innocence but raised to the divine; something which could not come to fruition without Christ’s suffering and that of His people (cf. Heb2:9; Rom8:17).

For here is another mystery – suffering appears to be a necessary or at the least a beneficial ingredient within the process of perfection and glorification, even for One who was without sin (Heb2:10). Such grist for glory would not have existed if all had been sweetness and light on planet earth. It wasn’t, largely as a result of what ostensibly appeared to be extraordinary victories by Satan at Eden and then at Calvary. The reality was he had fallen for God’s trap on both counts, unwittingly facilitating the process that had so aggrieved him and lesser fallen angels in the first place. That was God’s stupendous plan to raise children of dust to the heights of glory (Heb2:5-9). Such an elevation became inexorable through the incarnation of God’s Word. For it would be a Man, not an angel who would be incorporated into the Godhead. Consequently, the Most High Jesus Christ already regards His human disciples as His own kith and kin (Heb2:11). Yet His incarnation had been necessitated by Satan’s apparent victory at Eden. So shall the Prince of Darkness be shown for what he really is – the ultimate loser and unwitting lackey of God.

Preparing the way

Satan might also be considered the ultimate “mountain” within Isaiah’s prophecy concerning he who would prepare the world for the Messiah’s rule on earth. They thought it would be John the Baptist – it wasn’t in view of God’s secret plan for the Gentiles in the current age (previous post):

The voice of him that cries in the wilderness, “Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God”. Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain. Then the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the Lord has spoken it. (Is40:3-5).

Certainly, I believe that what I am trying to bring about with respect to the churches is a necessary preparation for the coming of the Lord in glory. That is so that as one united body speaking with one voice, the Church can go on to prepare the world. For God would surely wish such a witness to be provided – it is only right and just, not to mention a biblical promise (Mt24:14). Such would require the churches to have a united sense of what message is to be presented. It should be evident by now that a meaningful re-affiliation will never be achieved via denominational apologetics or ecumenical dialogue, certainly whilst Evangelicalism is in the mix (final paragraph). The only way the healing of Christ’s Body on earth can be accomplished is if ALL churches are shown to be in substantial error in their understanding of the bible. At the same time the right interpretation must have been provided, not through human ingenuity or painstaking scholarship but by prophetic insight through a revelation of the Spirit.

Assessing the fruit

What then would be the fruits of my labours if such mission were to succeed?

  • A re-affiliated Church, humbled and truly reformed
  • At last, a coherent interpretation of the bible – already provided but in need of refinement by the ecclesiological/theological/literary erudite
  • Such would enable a coherent message to be preached to a world already captivated by the developments they perceived within Christendom (cf. Jn13:35)
  • That all sincere Christians regardless of their current denominational allegiance are provided with the necessary teaching and sacramental provision required for their sanctification and “attain to the prize of the high calling of God” (Phi3:10-14)
  • That the rest of the world is made aware of the imminent judgement to come and advised to act accordingly (cf. Lk3:11-14)
  • Rejoicing, that the many who have died and had previously been understood by unbelievers to be gone forever or by many believers to be “in perdition” will in fact be shown to have benefitted (forensically) from Christ’s Passion anticipating a blessed reunion with loved ones in the age to come (cf. Rev21:4)
  • That God will be seen to be what He truly is – in a word, munificent
  • That Christ’s Atonement will no longer be regarded by any as “limited”; rather it will be understood to be bifold (forensic and participatory); pardoning all people of good will whilst also sanctifying those who worthily participate in its pure re-presentation at the Eucharist (cf. Mal1:11-12)
  • That the mystery of God shall have been completed (Rev10:7).

The contrast with Augustine and Luther

Finally and briefly, contrast such a potential orchard with the thorns and thistles these two gentlemen cultivated. For as most would agree, these were the two most influential men in ecclesiological history. What would the Church now be like if Augustine had never been born or had not converted, given that as has been observed by others, all medieval theology utilized by the Roman Church (pre-Vat2) and built upon by the Protestant Reformers is essentially Augustinian? Logically, the Church would have developed a biblical theology that is more faithful to that of the earliest Church Fathers who had received the Faith in written and verbal form from the apostles and the likes of Timothy, Titus and Philemon. That, as I have been demonstrating, is also much closer to what has been set out in The Little Book of Providence.

And what of Luther’s Reformation? Global upheaval and warfare, ecclesiological fragmentation, mutual hatred between Christians; Catholics and Protestants initially burning and torturing each other believing they were doing their opponents’ souls a favour. That, as well as all the doctrinal errors I have been identifying, especially the undermining of the Eucharist as the source and summit of the Christian life, not so much by Luther himself but by his later followers. As for “Reformed theology”, in its purest form such as I adhered to for 28 years as a Calvinist, Holy Scripture as pruned, translated and interpreted by the Reformers portrays a God who from any reasoned human perspective appears incomprehensibly harsh and unjust. He is the antithesis of love personified (1Jn4:8), unless “agape” means something quite different when applied to God than it does applied to man. In the watered-down Arminian guise that the majority of Evangelicals adopt, the anticipated cosmic outcomes are no better in view of the historical religious and cultural formation that the Creator has (at the least) overseen. The resulting disfigurement of divine providence, albeit cryptically, was foretold in Scripture, and I have alluded to it in the opening chapter of the Little Book of Providence. I also did so cryptically, for what was revealed to me regarding Daniel, Jesus and Paul’s foresight on the matter literally had me screaming at the time and would be too much for some to bear (let the reader understand).

Yet that there is undoubtedly much that is admirable and God-pleasing in the practice and beliefs of many Protestant churches. For the record, I was an Anglican during my transition from Evangelicalism and still often attend mass at an Anglican Ecumenical cathedral. For surely God delights in all who seek to serve His Son in their daily lives and church activity – He is less interested in creeds per se, especially given that since the time of Luther, most Christians are in a particular denomination in view of their parentage, geography or channel of conversion. Likewise, there are many worthy Christians who despise creeds and denominations altogether. They regard themselves as simply “Christian”, behaving and practicing in a way they believe their Lord and Saviour would wish them to. Others again will not be remotely interested in the kind of detailed, seemingly pedantic interpretation of the bible with its attention to the Greek/Hebrew text that I have employed. Yet such is the one cult I have carried over from my Calvinist days which I believe God has utilized so that the truth might be attained. Some believers have virtually given up on the bible altogether: “biblical Christianity” as they have encountered it appears counter-intuitive to the loving God and Christ they sense and know in their hearts. Frankly that is no surprise given usual interpretations; and such biblically liberal Christians are well capable of bearing good fruit and imparting the light of Christ to the world. 

Why it has to change

So, to each their own and everything is hunky dory? But feed in the timeline and the computer says “NO”. The nature of the times means that such an autonomous approach can no longer be sustained in view of the final witness required for the world. Apart from which, God’s wish for the current age has always been that “in every place there be a sacrifice and a clean oblation offered to My name” (Malachi 1:11). Yet the Holy Eucharist as practiced by Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox is an anathema to most Evangelicals. Whilst such a movement exists the Church cannot possibly preach a coherent gospel, neither can Christians in the separated churches avail themselves of what is required for Life and ongoing cleansing from sin (Jn6:53; 1Jn1:7) [Note 1]. 

Yet I believe a joyful resolution to the current ecclesiological chaos and distorted presentations of divine providence has been foretold – again cryptically, for the mystery has had to be sustained (Rev10:7). Enoch, written to be a blessing to the final generation of Christians is more explicit concerning how matters are finally to be resolved [En93:10 & 104:10-14 Charles Version].  So, all in all I am confident of a fruitful outcome. So, whilst I have sluggishly and feebly planted, others with more fortitude may water once they become convinced that I relay the truth. Then it shall be for God to bring forth the increase.     

NOTE 1

Many like myself in the past understand that a believers’ sins were not only pardoned but purged at Calvary. That arises in part from a misunderstanding of Heb1:3 which is wrongly translated in many Protestant bibles. I will quote from my book on the subject:

Through the shedding of His blood at Calvary, Christ had provided a purification through Himself (Heb1:3 Greek: di heautou katharismon poiesamenos). This verse deceives through mistranslation in many versions, implying that the sins of the believer were purged at Calvary, stating like the KJV, “when… He had purged our sins…” But “Katharismon (purification or cleansing) is a noun, not a verb. The New International Version more accurately translates the verse as “(Christ) provided purification for sins”. For we have to avail ourselves of it – the blood must be applied. The writer to the Hebrews refers to the blood of the New Covenant as “the blood of sprinkling” (Heb12:24) referring to the repeated act of sprinkling the blood of bulls on the people of Israel to seal God’s covenant with them. Peter refers to the same concept in the context of something that, like the believer’s obedience is ongoing: “To the elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father through a hallowing of the spirit leading to obedience and the sprinkling of the blood of Jesus (1Pet1:2) whereas the once-for-all-time shedding of Christ’s blood at Calvary is referred to by Paul in the context of attaining universal reconciliation: “Having made peace through the blood of His cross, God would reconcile all things to Himself by Christ, whether they be things on earth or things in heaven” (Col1:20).

[Excerpt from Fellowship of the Secret chapter three]

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WAITING AND PRAYING [CONTINUED]

God’s secret plan

I continue to wait and pray for the breakthrough needed to take matters forward. How and why I believe that can happen is likely to be the subject of subsequent post(s). In the meantime, I will summarize the main points regarding biblical interpretation that has been the primary focus of my writing.

God’s secret plan

The catalyst for the reinterpretations was an understanding of why Paul had unexpectedly been appointed as thirteenth faithful apostle [Matthias had replaced Judas as #12]. It was in order “to preach to the Gentiles the unfathomable riches of Christ, and to enlighten all people regarding the secret plan which had been hidden in God from previous ages (Eph3:8-9). But that secret plan is something that no one appears to have appreciated regarding both its providential and dispensational implications. For effectively it means that the current age is not a spiritualized fulfilment of Old Testament prophecy, but in terms of the salvation history outlined in the Law and Prophets is an inserted epoch. Paul tells us this came about to provoke God’s disbelieving chosen race to envy – by enlisting members of the Gentile nations into the messianic community (Rom11 vv11,12,15,30).

It had long been prophesied that a coming Jewish Messiah would bring salvation to the world, but the supporting cast who themselves had a salvific role to enact (Ex19:6; Deut4:6) had failed to fulfil God’s purposes for them. They were therefore to be replaced, or rather enhanced, which radically altered the the timing for the establishment of God’s rule on earth. Observe how Paul subverts the OT prophecy concerning that rule: the feet are still beautiful but there is no longer a mention of God’s earthly rule which had been the apotheosis of Isaiah’s proclamation [Rom10:15 vis-à-vis Is52:7]. Likewise, John the Baptist had warned of the wrath to come, and it is clear he meant pretty darn soon, for he believed it would impact the scribes and pharisees that he had scolded. And (more problematically for some), Jesus’s Olivet prophecies, especially Mt10:23 but all of them in reality: the Son of Man would not be returning in glory for a very long time. For God the Father, under whose personal authority such matters of timing are placed (Acts1:7), will have known the Jews would fail their mission, but also that in technological and intercommunicative terms the world was nowhere near ready 2000 years ago for what needed to be enacted in preparation for Christ’s rule on earth.  As the Romans11 references affirm (which in view of how the rest of the New Testament has been interpreted are problematical when taken as read), it had not been anticipated (i.e. prophesied in the Old Testament) that non-Jews could be saved in the sense of being raised to eternal life in the current age, hence Peter and others’ surprise and confusion when they were (Acts11:17-18; 26:18).

Once this dispensational shift is comprehended, it really is a revelation as sweet as honey, for the providential implications are glorious, especially with respect to the prospects for the many who do not (and unless spiritually aided cannot) encounter the grace of Christ through the gospel. For let there be no dissembling: Jesus, Paul, John and Luke (in Acts) affirm that fallen man is incapable of coming to salvation in Christ unless divinely enabled to do so (Jn1:13 & 6:44; Rom8:29; Acts13:48). For it is the Church, like Isaac who are the children of promise (Gal4:28). Ishmael, Isaac’s half-brother, though blessed by both God and Abraham was excluded. Likewise now, for those who have been cleansed and regenerated through infant baptism, it will have been a matter of grace and election. Even for adult converts, faith in Christ “is not of yourself, it is a gift of God” (Eph2:8 cf. Acts13:48). Nor can these references be referring to God foreknowing who would accept the gospel, for such would still be election based on merit. For nothing can be more meritorious than being prepared to give up everything to serve Christ. But Paul is adamant that election is not based on merit, either actual or foreseen. God gives to some the ears to hear and the eyes to see Jesus and proclaim with Peter, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”. If that has had happened to you then “Blessed are you, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but the Father who is in heaven”, says Jesus (Mt16:17); “God has saved us and called us to a holy calling, NOT on the basis of our works but according to His own purposes and the grace that was given to us in Christ Jesus before the times of the ages”, says Paul  (2Tim1:9).

Attaining the prize of final salvation and the rewards that go with it is another matter (e.g.1Cor9:24), for to remain within the covenant of promise requires personal cooperation and active participation in the life of Christ (Rom5:10). One must suffer with Him in order to be glorified with Him (Rom8:17). But election/predestination does not determine who shall become the children of God (cf. Rom8:21) but who shall be the firstborn of God’s human family. That is why the Church is described as “the assembly of the firstborn” (Heb12:23: “πρωτοτόκων” being plural – it is not referring to Christ but His people): the royal priesthood of God (1Pet2:9). And as just shown, these must be prepared to give up everything in this life for the privilege (Mt16:24-25), affirming once again God’s sublime equity. That is something which can only be achieved applying a dual perspective interpretation on salvation (next paragraph). Otherwise. one either rejects the bible’s teaching on the matter altogether, or goes along with the Protestant Reformers’ maxim, “Let God be God”, i.e. He may appear unjust and cruel to us but that is His prerogative. It is but He isn’t, and Paul has affirmed it – God is no respecter of persons but is fair and just to all (Rom2:6-16). That is a passage I once regarded as anomalous, but now I delight in it (it’s the rest of Romans I had failed to understand). It affirms the Creator’s thoroughly intelligible justice as Someone we can not only fear but adore.

Clarifying Matthew 25

Once the bifold nature of salvation has been identified, Paul can be taken at his word (especially in Romans 11). That is that Gentiles would not have “been saved” in the current age if Israel had not failed its mission. But that would not have meant they would have all faced perdition. The soul going to heaven or otherwise is rarely if ever what Paul is referring to, whereas Jesus clearly was referring to such a distinction in His parable of the sheep and goats (Mt25). It is a passage where religion is not mentioned or even implied , merely that the “sheep” had exercised compassion and that Jesus regarded their help of the poor as service to Himself (v40). For the Lord, as is sometimes the case with the Apostle John, is here distinguishing between those who are of God and those who are the children of the devil (1Jn3:10). Gospel salvation on the other hand relates to spiritual cleansing and empowering to relate to the Godhead whilst still in human flesh. Such is necessary for those who are to be most closely associated with Christ in the age to come. Such faithful disciples are also described as God’s elect: the firstborn of God’s human family and a kind of first fruit of the created order (James1:18). The rest (i.e. man by nature) Paul describes as being “dead in trespasses and sins” (Eph2:1). But the “death” to which Paul refers pertains not to the soul but to the procreated intellectual vessel that the spiritual/eternal part of us currently inhabits, preventing the soul from experiencing a cognisant relationship with God, our conscience becoming defiled by “dead works” (Heb9:14). Such a relationship is what the bible means by eternal life (Jn17:3 cf. 1Jn3:15 – note the present tense).

The inner conflict

Relatedly, in one of the most crucial yet misunderstood passages in the New Testament, the apostle describes the vessel inhabited by the soul as “the body of this death” (Rom7:24 check Greek), for he is referring to the condition he had been describing in the preceding passage. That pertained to the inner conflict between the bodily senses processed through the brain (resulting in the aforementioned “dead works” and defiled conscience) and the nobler instincts of the inner man or spirit: “For I joyfully agree with the law of God in the inner man but I see a different law in the members of my body waging war against the law of my (spiritual) mind, making me a prisoner of the law of sin – that law which is in my body’s parts (Rom7:22-23). That is affirming that it is not the God-given soul per se that is the source of mankind’s problem with sin but the procreated intellectual vessel (body and brain) with which it is associated whilst in mortal flesh. This is more good news – for it is something which is temporal that prevents mankind from rightly relating to God and falling into sin, not that which is eternal (1Pet4:6 & 3:19-20; cf. Gen6:3 strictly YLT). Note from the Genesis verse, God’s reference to “My spirit” cannot be the Holy Spirit for the latter is not possessed by all men whereas a God-given spirit is (1Thes5:23), albeit the post-Augustinian Church teaches otherwise. God did mankind a favour by shortening his lifespan as recorded in Genesis, knowing that the spirit He provided would always contend and fail against the flesh (body and brain) as long as they were co-existent. At least that is the case for the many who would not come to partake of Christ’s body and blood and be raised to eternal life (Jn6:53).

Heaven and the need for the other place

The events of Eden did not change God’s ultimate intentions towards those He had made in His image. He wanted them to “become like one of Us” (Gen3:22) – but not before they were ready. Satan persuaded Eve and Adam there was no need to wait. As a result of the fallout, it became necessary that man become re-accustomed to God and the things of God; likewise, the Word of God condescended to become accustomed to man through His incarnation. For the Christian, such divine pedagogy commences during earthly life through a living relationship with that same incarnate Word. But such a familiarization shall be required for all who are to play a positive role in the new heavens and earth where righteousness prevails, so for many the refamiliarization must continue after physical death (cf. 1Pet4:6). Depending on what one’s soul has become, the transformation required may be difficult and painful, but infinitely worth it, whilst for a few it will prove to be impossible. These are the unsaltables (below).

As a palliative to what I will write shortly concerning the true Church, those who in their lifetime delight in worshipping Christ and seek to serve Him, regardless of their denominational allegiance will clearly be at an advantage in respect of this transition. As, no doubt, will all who have feared the god of their understanding and have served such in the way they understand they should. Indeed, such will have been the only right and proper response to their conscience. It will have been a preparation for the worship and service of the true God, Son and Spirit. Likewise, everyone regardless of any religious faith at all, who in the language of second century Irenaeus, “attend to moral discipline[1], paying heed to the natural precepts of the law by which man can be justified[2]. Regrettably for those of my former ilk, “imputed righteousness” will not play a role. It is our soul that enters eternity in the state it is at death, or else it would not be our life. For “righteousness” or the lack of it is what we are or have become. It is our true self that God ultimately wishes to unite to Himself; He already relates to His Son.

Hell – a divinely ordered establishment

At this point it is helpful to refer to Jesus’ teaching in Mt5:22, carefully noting the gradations.  “I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be answerable to the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be answerable to the Sanhedrin, whilst whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into hell fire”. This reflects the absurdity of traditional Western teaching on hell: It is never “all or nothing”. Nevertheless, for those whose misuse of their bodily members and senses has compromised the integrity of their soul (Mt5:29-30), Jesus affirms directly in the context of hell’s punishments that such must “be salted with fire, salt being good. However, if the salt becomes unsaltable, how will you make it salty again? Better to have salt in yourselves and be at peace with one another” (Mk9:49-50).

Neither is hell administered by demons with pitchforks as depicted in some medieval paintings, but by God, His saints and angels (cf. Lk16:25 – it is strictly Hades, but note the administrator and why Lazarus is being comforted – it has nothing to do with religion or having lived a sinless life). For, Jesus insists, everyone must be salted, if not in this life, then in the next (cf. Lk6:24-25). My book explains why this must be (ch.7). Your Church is unlikely to, for most have yet to grasp this mystery, yet it’s potentially the most wonderful news of all😂. Hell incorporates an element of punishment (for sure) and is best avoided. But for most attendees it is primarily a place of learning (the hard way), moral correction, preparation and purification. There is no distinction between the fires of hell and “purgatory” either in the bible or the writings of those who had received the Faith directly from the apostle.

In the worst cases, in view of what a few individuals have become in life (irredeemably vile), they could never exist within “new heavens and a new earth where righteousness dwells” that Peter sought after. It is best for such creatures and everyone else that after due punishment they cease to exist. For they are “unsaltable, good for nothing, to be cast out and trodden under foot” (Mt5:13). God’s hatred of evil, proportional punishment and redistributive/compensatory justice are the outworking of His love, as all who possess the mind of Christ should discern. Such was third century Origen: “God confers benefits justly and punishes with kindness; since neither goodness without justice nor justice without goodness can display the real dignity of the divine nature” (Origen de Principiis Book II chap5 para 3).

Heaven’s requirement

As already intimated, the souls of all people of good will (who already have salt in themselves), regardless of their faults and failings or religious faith shall ultimately be accepted into God’s kingdom and have the joy of being reunited with those they have loved and lost. The Son of Man teaches that heaven’s requirement is simply to have possessed and practiced “agape”, being the essence of God Himself (Mt25:40; 1Jn4:8). In other words (and this will confuse many but is explained HERE), the Mt25 “sheep” were justified by faith working through love (Gal5:6). However, Christian faith, obedience to the laws of Christ and attendance to the sacraments of Holy Church are required to be “saved to the uttermost”. That is to be fitted to become the corporate bride of Christ, even to share His throne (Rev3:21). This is for the proportionally few who are called, chosen and faithful. Like Paul, they “press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Phi3:14). 😲What? “Did you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win” (1Cor9:24). Yet God has made it clear that He sent His Son to save the world and desires that all men be soul-healed and come to a knowledge of the truth. He does not achieve that by despatching the bulk of humanity to a lost eternity for failing to do what we have already proven from Scripture they were incapable of doing. Being, like Paul, an athlete for Christ to attain to God is one thing; avoiding perdition by showing oneself to be truly human (Mt25) is another. Everything fits into place once this salvific distinction has been apprehended – and God is shown to be what He truly is: comprehensively and comprehensibly adorable.

What else?

But there are more interpretative errors that God has determined should be sustained until these very last days: an eluded covenant (Gen4); misunderstanding aspects of faith and justification; failure to distinguish “children of the devil” from the unsaved; the non-imputation of Adam’s guilt to his offspring… I could go on (and on). In terms of summarized points, my 95 theses refer. Regarding traditional systematized Western biblical theology, what I have effectively been saying is “rip it up and start again”. Except there is no need – the task has already been completed and set out in The Little Book of Providence, albeit with about as much erudition as this retired London bus driver (“Charton”)3 would be expected to muster. Yet the book’s ability to enable scripture to cohere is I believe unprecedented, being ultimately the work of God and itself the fulfilment of prophecy. That has especially but not exclusively been set out in the Book of Enoch – extra-canonical scripture written to be a blessing to the final generation of Christians (its opening verse).

Less radical than Luther

I sense what you might be thinking (🤣 or 😒) but what Luther and the Reformers proposed and implemented 500 years ago was far more radical than this. Their “rip it up and start again” applied not only to essential doctrine but to the very body of Christ. Not only that, but in view of the traditional dualistic interpretation of biblical salvation they shared with the Catholic Church, Protestants were effectively saying that what was required of men and women to escape eternal torment had been largely unknown and untaught by the churches for the previous thousand or more years. And for the first 28 years of my Christian life I, albeit unwittingly, went along with this travesty. I now know it to be an extraordinary affront on our loving Heavenly Father’s providential care of humanity and Christ’s stewardship of His people through the centuries. Yet I in the past and Evangelicals today are typically oblivious to the implications of their founders’ assertions. For many are not au fait with the earliest Fathers’ writings, nor aware of Luther’s preposterous proposal that these men, some of whom had been directly tutored by the apostles, could uniformly have been in darkness concerning the essentials of saving faith.

I on the other hand have made it clear throughout that a true Church has always existed, albeit divided for the last 1000 years into East (Orthodox) and West (Catholic). Each has provided everything necessary (and more besides) for fulness of salvation. What has been lacking, more particularly in the West (apart from the vital contribution of the many sincere believers in Christ who became Evangelical) is nevertheless radical, indeed almost laughable “(יִצְחָ֔ק)”3. That is a right understanding of what humanity is intended to be saved FROM: not the pollution of an intrinsically corrupted soul but the moral degeneracy of the temporary intellectual vessel it inhabits (cf. Rom7:24). And what salvation is FOR: not to escape a wrathful God’s predisposition to condemn imperfect souls to hell, but to partake of the divine nature whilst still in mortal flesh (proto-theosis). That is so that those predestined to the role are fitted for immediate participation in Christ’s rule in the age to come. As Wikipedia affirms, such a premillennial perspective was the prevailing understanding of the early Church. The first “Christian?” opposition was from Marcion, a heretic who rejected the incarnation of Christ and the canonicity of the Old Testament. More significantly, third century Origen came openly to oppose the doctrine, having an over-spiritualized perspective on events relating to the second coming of Christ. Still more influential was Augustine’s change of mind on the subject. That typically ensured the doctrine was dropped by the Church thereafter. For as a leading Anglican scholar in the wiki article rightly observed, all medieval theology is essentially Augustinian – and the Protestant Reformers built on it. [If Augustine got it wrong we are all in trouble, so here we all are]. Apart from the witness of those early premillennialists who had most immediately received the Faith from the apostles, my opening point concerning God’s secret plan (the inserted epoch) reinforces the rationale for a terrestrial age to follow the current one.

Unlike the separated assemblies, the true Church (East and West) has not been guilty of trashing Christ’s historical care and oversight of the very people He regards as His own flesh and bones (Eph5:30KJV). But largely in view of her incomplete understanding of salvation’s nature and purpose, the Apostolic Church since the time the biblical canon was finalized and its doctrine systematized around the 4th/5th century, has (to put it mildly) failed to do justice to God’s munificence. Hence “The Little Book” – sweet to the taste but likely to create bitterness in the abdomen (Greek: koilos) through that which had previously been assimilated, once God’s magnanimous providence has been ingested (Rev10:10). For in terms of the Catholic Church, it was not until the 1960s Vatican II’s “Lumen Gentium” that God’s broader benign providence towards “people of good will” was articulated at the conciliar level. But in this former Evangelical’s estimation, such broader benign providence has not been adequately underpinned from Scripture. Nor could it be without deconstructing much Augustinian-derived theology – a matter I have been attending to since I was made aware of these truths.

Waiting and praying – for the Catholic Church

Having begun my 50+ year Christian journey from a very different position, it became clear after my first spiritual encounter which (inconveniently) occurred whilst I was  at college training for the Baptist ministry (1998) that the Church at Rome is the assembly whose bishop is intended to have oversight of the whole Church militant, and with whom every Christian assembly should ideally be incorporated or  affiliated – “for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ when we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ, henceforth no longer tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine by the sleight of men and cunning craftiness of those who lie in wait to deceive” (Eph4:12-14).

But as I have been intimating, that cannot happen until all assemblies, Rome included (and to a lesser extent the Greek Church) acknowledge substantial doctrinal error – summarized in my 95 theses and set out in full in The Little Book of Providence. Clearly such an acknowledgement would only be forthcoming if it became widely recognized that I, though a spiritual and intellectual pygmy, am nevertheless in accordance with God’s good humour, an instrument for this purpose (Mt11:25; cf. Rev10:7). That is why I earnestly pray for YOU, the reader. For if and when the Spirit affirms in your mind and conscience that I write the truth, you could have a pivotal role to play in taking the matter forward, especially if you have any personal influence yourself as a priest/pastor/leader/writer or have an association with those who do.

NOTES

[1]  Irenaeus against heresies Book III chap. 25 (para 1)

[2] Ibid. Book IV chap. 13 para 1

[3] Two of the three names by which I was addressed in “the acoustic mystery“. יִצְחָ֔ק (Yitshak) aka Isaac, denotes he who laughs (or is laughed about), whilst “Charton” is an obscure surname denoting a carter or coachman (in modern times a busman). According to sources I have identified on internet, the Hebrew and English names are linked. The third address I received on the recording is still more extraordinary, being my usual name “Richard”, for the one who I am sure uttered it is no longer with us. The linked post identifies where on the recording these utterances occur.

Author’s FACEBOOK page HERE

WAITING AND PRAYING

There has been quite a delay since my previous post as the intention of the current one was to set out the practical implications of what I believe has been revealed to me by the Spirit. But frankly it all appears so audacious I can scarcely bring myself to do it. What presumption! What audacity! – “You’re having a laugh, aren’t you?” No, but others are – and unless my ears deceive me, they are not of this earthly realm. And they have given me a name (several in fact as you will have heard if you listened to the recording I have published). And it is not of a prophet as I might have wished or vaingloriously anticipated but pertains to my previous secular occupation: the now virtually obsolete “Charton” – coachman/ bus driver, but also the tenuously related יִצְחָ֔ק which pertains to laughter and to election (cf. Gen17:17; Gal4:28). I have written it in Hebrew for it is always quoted as such (“Yitshak”🤣). The latest recording that I received (shortly to be published with some elaborations regarding earlier recordings) also repeats that name. By whom is it uttered? By demons I suspect – but such do tend to know who’s who (Acts19:15), apart from which it cannot be they (imprisoned spirits) who have compiled the recordings. More to the point, if it were intended as a deception, why provide a name that no one would expect or associate with what I understand myself to be doing (Mal4:5-6)?

A prophet of such standing would expect to receive clear, concise, divinely or angelically provided instructions. That has NOT happened in my case – the disclosure has been curious, cryptic and protracted, progressing over a nine-year period (to date). Yet scripturally speaking, that is not so surprising (cf. Dan12; Mal4 Rev10; Enoch93&104Charles). [I do not equate Enoch with canonical scripture, but as its opening verse intimates and most early Church fathers acknowledged, it is inspired writing, quoted as it is in Jude. It was not written for the benefit of the Church through her history but as its opening verse affirms, for “the elect and righteous” who would be living in the final days of the current epoch. Its author miraculously foresaw that the writing and the prophecies it contained would be virtually lost to the Church and the world for a prolonged period, then later rediscovered and translated into many languages – exactly as happened through what was discovered at Qumran in the mid-20th century].  

Scoffers and doubters can take comfort that I currently claim to have no divine, still less ecclesiological standing whatsoever. But then, if I were the Pope or the greatest Evangelical evangelist there has ever been, could I now unite the churches in preparation for Christ’s return? You will surely appreciate there is not the remotest chance, given where we all are. Truly, there could be no individual, speaking under the authority and auspices of any particular church denomination that could do that right now or indeed since the time of Luther. Hence the voice of one crying in the spiritual wilderness – “prepare the way of the Lord; make His paths straight”. If the children of the Reformation are to be reunited with their spiritual forefathers so all may “come in the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God , perfected to the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ (Eph4:13), duly equipped in time to preach a coherent gospel as a final witness to the world (Mt24:14), it could only ever take place from the predisposition that all denominations, doctrinally and for many liturgically, have been substantially in error. That is most definitively in respect to their understanding of the context of the church and gospel within God’s providential intentions towards His creation as a whole (cf. Enoch93:10Charles]. That in turn pertains to God’s secret plan for the Gentile nations (effectively resulting in an inserted epoch 🤣 in the context of Old Testament prophecy and salvation history), revealed by Paul but seemingly not wholly understood by anyone (Eph3:2-11 cf. Rom11:11,12,15,30) – for the apostle’s teaching taken (as I now do) at face value cannot be squared with traditional interpretations of what the bible actually means by gospel salvation.

Notwithstanding these cautionary caveats, be in no doubt that I believe I have received divinely provided insights concerning – i) how the bible should be interpreted – in the process enabling it to become intrinsically coherent; ii) in broad terms how God is going to exercise judgement and take forward His plans for his earthly creation, and iii) most pertinently for those who are likely to be reading this, what is required of those who shall be the “saints” who live to see the return of Christ in glory. The matter has already been set out in the Little Book of Providence, supplemented by posts on this website and Facebook book page. I continue to pray earnestly that I will receive more substantiating affirmation, ideally of the kind that could be verified by others – at which point my approach and demeanour would be less tentative, more akin to that of Ezekiel chapter three.   

NOAH’S GREAT-GRANDAD PREDICTS PDF DOWNLOADS ON THE INTERNET

My post’s title is intentionally tongue-in-cheek – but not entirely so; for sometimes what appears to be a preposterous proposition can turn out to be the truth. But academically speaking, it is contentious to believe that Noah’s great-grandfather Enoch was the real author of the Book of Enoch. But what is virtually universally accepted is that it was written at least 2000 years ago. Yet the implication of the quoted prophecy (which may not be visible on mobiles unless you click the picture) is that certain books were to be freely and universally distributed. The full text reads:

After they have written down truthfully all my words in their languages, not erring from my words but writing them down truthfully, then I know another mystery. Books are to be given to the righteous and the wise to become a cause of joy and uprightness and much wisdom. To them shall the BOOKS BE GIVEN, and they shall BELIEVE IN THEM AND REJOICE OVER THEM, and then shall all the righteous who have learnt from them the TRUE paths of righteousness be recompensed” [En104:10-14 – my highlighting]

The idea of books being widely distributed was humanly speaking an alien concept prior to the mid-2nd millennium invention of the printing press. That was the primary means by which the Protestant Reformation gained traction in the 16th century. [As referred to in a recent post, I believe the author of Enoch alludes to that distant future event when he wrote in the same chapter (104): “they will alter and pervert the words of righteousness in many ways, and will speak wicked words, and lie, and practise great deceits and write books concerning their teachings”]. But now Enoch is referring to books being given (i.e. by implication freely distributed). And to whom? – a specific grouping, sect or nation? No, “to the righteous and the wise” who clearly would be scattered throughout the world. And how could these “righteous and wise” obtain this writing? Clearly, they must have the ability to access, examine and thereby discern that the writing in question was profitable for wisdom; then to freely acquire it for themselves. I cannot envisage such a scenario being feasible until the invention of the internet and portable document format files (PDFs), themselves an invention of the early 1990s, at least two thousand years after the prophecy.

Why Enoch must have written Enoch

Remember, the Book of Enoch is quoted in New Testament Jude and acknowledged by many early Fathers to be divinely inspired – even by those such as Augustine who did most to ensure it was rejected from the canon of Scripture. That is why I (along with the Ethiopian Orthodox Church) am clear it was the work of the patriarch himself. For how could that which is inspired and included in the New Testament be a fabrication of deceit? How could that which is divinely inspired be the creation of someone in the 2nd or 3rd century before Christ claiming to be the original patriarch, passing off as divine prophecy much that was already history? And it has been shown to be prophecy indeed – discerning that the Book of Enoch would be lost to the Church and the world for centuries and then (in the caves of Qumran in the 1940s) rediscovered and translated into many languages, just as foretold.

As for the “other books” that were to be freely distributed, that cannot refer to the supplementary books of Enoch or indeed anything discovered at Qumran. They of themselves could never be a source of joy, wisdom and righteousness for the generation “who would be living at the time of tribulations when the wicked and godless are to be removed” (Enoch’s opening verse). Why? Because as with the canonical Old Testament, they do not contain or adequately reflect the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ and the apostles set out in the New Testament. So, either the books being referred to are entirely new revelation for the last days of the current age OR they are a clarification of earlier revelation that had been widely misinterpreted. It can only be the latter – for everything the world and the church are intended to know and practice in the current age has already been provided in the New Testament and cannot be supplemented. What is more, unlike the scarcely credible assertions of the Protestant Reformers, I am affirming that all that is necessary for gospel salvation is and always has been taught and provided for within the Catholic/Orthodox churches that can trace their sacerdotal lineage back to the apostles. The issue being addressed is whether the bible as a whole has been properly understood? Indeed, was it intended rightly to be interpreted until the very last days, especially concerning the sovereign Creator’s providential purposes and His rationale with respect to evil and suffering? Revelation chapter ten hints otherwise:

 “(The angel) had in his hand a little book which was open. He placed his right foot on the sea and his left on the land and he cried out with a loud voice, as when a lion roars; and when he had cried out, the seven peals of thunder uttered their voices. When the seven peals of thunder had spoken, I was about to write; and I heard a voice from heaven, saying, “Seal up the things which the seven peals of thunder have spoken, and DO NOT WRITE THEM” (Rev10:2-4). 

Yet its opening verse had declared Revelation to be “the disclosure of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His servants (the Church) the things which must soon take place” (Rev1:1). For sure, that disclosure was often presented in  symbolic terms, but nevertheless John wrote down everything he saw and heard as a testimony to the churches. Yet there was one unique exception: the contents of the little book referred to in chapter ten. We are (literally) only given a flavour of what that might contain: sweet as honey to the taste buds but creating bitterness in the abdomen (Greek: κοιλία) , in view (I believe) of what had previously been ingested. “For in the days of the voice of the seventh messenger, when he is about to sound off, then the mystery of God shall be completed, as He announced to His servants the prophets” (10:7).

Nevertheless, it is all somewhat cryptic and open to various interpretations – less so in the Book of Enoch for those who can receive it. For in addition to the aforementioned reference to books being given to the wise and righteous, we saw in the previous post concerning the Apocalypse of Weeks that immediately before the wicked were removed from the earth and  the dead in Christ raised: “at the close (of the seventh week) shall be chosen the elect righteous (ones) of the eternal plant of righteousness to receive a sevenfold instruction concerning all of God’s creation”. As affirmed a few paragraphs ago, such could neither contradict nor substantively add to what has already been revealed in the biblical canon, merely clarify or remedy its interpretation. For example, explaining how the benefits of Christ’s Passion applied to those outside the Covenants of Promise, i.e., the bulk of humanity – regarded by many Christians as mere collateral damage within God’s redemptive plans for humanity. Such an amelioration would surely be sweet as honey in the mouth, replacing the much narrower perspectives that subsequently become ripe for expulsion. 

Conviction assured; verification awaited

If you are accessing this post on Facebook, you will notice that the featured picture for my book page is that of this post, an Enoch scroll containing the reference to the mystery of the “other books” quoted in En104. That is because for some years now (but crucially for testimonial purposes, not at the outset of writing The Little Book of Providence) I believe I have a personal interest in this prophecy. That has become clearer and more certain in recent months, especially following the events and communications to which I referred in my 70th birthday testimonial post. But I need to convince others that such is the case, and this will be attempted in subsequent posts.

Download a FREE PDF of The Little Book of Providence from HERE:

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ENOCH – COMPLETING THE BIBLICAL JIGSAW

The bible – a puzzle to many adults also!
"The righteous shall be victorious in the name of the Lord of Spirits and He will cause the others to witness this that they may repent and forgo the works of their hands. They shall have no honour through the name of the Lord of Spirits yet through His name they shall be saved, and the Lord of Spirits shall have compassion on them, for His compassion is great. And He is righteous also in His judgement, and in the presence of His glory unrighteousness shall also not maintain itself: at His judgement the unrepentant shall perish before Him"[Enoch ch50 Charles translation – my highlighting]

My previous post outlined Enoch’s prophecy regarding weeks 8-10, the start of which is the point that Christ returns to judge the earth and raise the dead-in-Christ from their graves. Of course, as with the canonical Old Testament, LJC is not named as such, but it is undoubtedly Him (“the Chosen One”) being referred to, as the narrative indicated a few chapters earlier:

 On that day the Chosen One will sit upon the throne of glory, and will choose among men’s deeds and places without number, and their spirit will become strong in them when they see my Chosen One and those who have called upon my holy and glorious name.  And on that day I will cause my Chosen One to dwell among them, and will transform heaven and make it a blessing and a light eternally.  And I will transform the earth and make it a blessing, and will cause my chosen ones to dwell thereon, whilst those who have committed sins and crimes will not step on it [45:3-5].

The key point I am highlighting from the opening featured passage is that there are not two but three categories of people identified at the end-of-age judgement. The same is more cryptically indicated in canonical Revelation with respect to the New Jerusalem. Chapter 21 describes this as a bride adorned for her Husband. The city is enormous in size and the saints of God are its inhabitants – they are the bride. Yet we also read in verse 24 that “the nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it”. Or as some versions/manuscripts render it “the nations of those that are saved”… (e.g. KJV). These cannot be the saints of God who are the “wife of the Lamb” and who inhabit the city. The likes of the Apostle Paul, Moses and Elijah do not “walk by its light” or pay occasional visits. No, the group being referred to are those who have been saved (spared) through the compassion of God and in view of their willingness to repent and bow the knee to the King of Kings, or “Chosen One” as the Book of Enoch describes the Son of Man. As Paul indicated, others who refuse to believe the Good News of Christ even after it has been made clear to them (which has certainly not been the case for most in the current age) are to be ignominiously dealt with (“set ablaze”) at Christ’s appearing (2Thes1:8).

Likewise in Enoch’s prophecy there are three groups. Firstly, the elect righteous, sometimes referred to as “the chosen ones”. They are those who had been “victorious in the name of the Lord of Spirits” and who shall receive honour and praise, even from the angels (40:5) [If you are uncomfortable with that idea then you should observe how Jesus describes His elect in Revelation (3:21) – for the LJC regards His faithful disciples as His own kith and kin and corporate bride-to-be, indicating the elect are to attain both royal and divine status (cf. Heb2:10-11)]. As should be evident from Scripture as a whole, this group are, proportionally speaking, a minority. Given planet earth’s cultural and religious formation, not to mention her catastrophic historical ecclesiological fractures, most human beings have never received an accurate account of the path to glory, still less embarked and persevered along it.

The role of natural law

Hence the divinely ordered but confusingly entitled “natural law”, for as I have previously explained, it pertains to that which is spiritual and to Christ as Logos as much as to the laws of nature. An effectual role for such was acknowledged by the earliest Christian writers such as Irenaeus (pupil of Polycarp, the pupil of the Apostle John) and Eusebius (3rd century Church historian who through his explicit references to natural law indicated such had been understood within the Church up to that point). But (typically) such divine benevolence was rejected by 4th /5th century Augustine and much later by the Protestant Reformers who built on his “theology of sovereign grace”. For natural law in this context (outlined below) infers a benevolence on God’s part and an underlying goodness on humanity’s part that such theologians and their adherents regard as abhorrent, undermining the gospel as they understand it. Satan would despise it also (the clue’s in his name), for he will have been more than happy for God to be presented as incomprehensibly harsh and unjust from any human perspective, and for men and women to be regarded as virtually depraved by nature, with gospel evangelism adapted  accordingly.

Second century Christian writers knew better, not because they were superior biblical exegetes but because they had received the full deposit of faith in written and verbal form, either from the apostles themselves, their proteges such as Timothy and Titus or those men’s immediate successors (which takes us into the early 2nd century). Hence, Justyn Martyr had spoken of God’s benevolence towards all who endeavour to walk uprightly and in accordance with right reason[1];  God, he wrote, is One who accepts those who imitate His own qualities of temperance, fairness and philanthropy and who exercise their free will in choosing what is pleasing to Him[2]. Irenaeus, also 2nd century, recognized that God in His providence is present with all who attend to moral discipline”[3] paying heed to the natural precepts of the law by which man can be justified[4]. To such men, God was comprehensively and comprehensibly adorable. He was just, He was good, He was compassionate, just as human beings understand those terms. And that is why the Creator has ensured that every human being has been provided with the innate ability ultimately to be united to Himself (but not to be delivered from the corrupting influence of mortal flesh in the present except they encounter the grace of Christ in the gospel – Rom7:24-25).

Through the faculty of conscience, most (not all) have an internal urge to do what is right – they inwardly delight in what is noble and virtuous even though they usually fail to live up to such moral aspirations (cf. Rom7:22-23). The architect-in-chief of Western theology on the other hand asserted that man by nature could do “absolutely no good thing, whether in thought or will, affection or action[5]. That is an affront to divine providence as much as it is to humanity. Yet there are some to whom such a description does apply: the twice dead (in mind and spirit– Jud1:12) – the children of the devil. In Enoch’s language they are the wicked and godless; in the secular world they are akin to psychopaths, whether criminal or respectable. Such peoples’ universally observed characteristics closely align with Scripture’s presentation of those who, like their archetype Cain are not “of God” (1Jn3:12) – devoid of a functioning conscience, lacking compassion and empathy, and with no compulsion whatever to speak the truth.

So, returning to the Judgement, in Enoch’s parable there are three categories – i) the righteous, ii) those who witness the vindication of the righteous and repent of their own wrongdoings. They are saved (i.e. spared) through God’s compassion, but not honoured to the degree of those who had obeyed the gospel. For only those who have partaken of the means of grace and been formed by divine teaching have souls fitted for immediate magisterial service in Christ’s Kingdom. Thirdly, there are those who refuse to repent and shall “perish before Him”. One might wonder who on earth would refuse to repent knowing the fate that awaits them. Likewise in New Testament accounts, who would not be willing to bow the knee to Jesus Christ when He is revealed to the world in His majestic glory? Category threes will already know the answer: for Jesus Christ is the summation of all that is good, and as such is an abhorrence to them. They cannot “repent” anymore than a goat can become a sheep or tares become wheat. They cannot become something they no longer are – a human being who in any measure reflects the image of God, being the personification of love.

Completing the biblical jigsaw

Be assured, the soteriological assumptions outlined above are not derived from the Book of Enoch but the New Testament – the teaching of Jesus and Paul in particular. And all have been reconciled and integrated with the teaching of the whole bible in The Little Book of Providence. Nevertheless, the Book of Enoch helps fill out the detail and complete the jigsaw. Otherwise aspects of the bible would remain a puzzle, such as the purpose and rationale for the universal flood and the existence of gigantic hybrids referred to in the Old Testament relating to the conquest and divinely ordered ethnic cleansing of some Canaanite territories. Hence God’s justice and judgements can be clarified and fully vindicated. And whilst mankind’s contribution to the woes and evils of this world is substantive, it is secondary to that of fallen members of the angelic realm – a reality more clearly presented in Enoch than canonical scripture in view of the greater detail provided concerning the judgements and destinies of the respective parties.

The focus of the bible

That is because canonical Scripture’s focus is the salvation history of the world centred on Christ and His peculiar peoples – the Jewish nation and the Church. It was never intended to be a comprehensive account of God’s creation – the origins, history and destiny of the angelic realm being a prime example; Enoch goes into far more detail. Likewise, God’s providential intentions towards creation as a whole – these are alluded to in the bible, but often cryptically so, in verses and passages that typically biblical theologians label as difficult or anomalous. Not so this “armchair theologian”, who is no theologian at all in any academic sense, merely someone who understands himself to have received revelatory insights concerning biblical interpretation. And especially those that impact upon the context of Israel and the Church within God’s broader benevolent providence; believing also that such an eventuality and the writing pertaining to it has been prophetically foretold, most clearly but not exclusively in the Book of Enoch (previous post).

References:


[1]  The first apology of Justin chaps. 43 & 46

[2]  ibid. chap. 10

[3]  Irenaeus against heresies Book III chap. 25 (para 1)

[4] Ibid. Book IV chap. 13 para 1

[5]  “On Rebuke and Grace” – chap. 3

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Related post: ENOCH’S APOCALYPSE – THE AGE TO COME

ENOCH’S APOCALYPSE – THE AGE TO COME

First resurrection
THE RIGHTEOUS SHALL ARISE FROM THEIR SLEEP, and wisdom shall arise and be given unto them. And after that the roots of unrighteousness shall be cut off, and the sinners shall be destroyed by the sword ... shall be cut off from the blasphemers in every place, and those who plan violence and those who commit blasphemy shall perish by the sword.  And after that there shall be another, THE EIGHTH WEEK, that of righteousness, and a sword shall be given to it that a righteous judgement may be executed on the oppressors, and sinners shall be delivered into the hands of the righteous.
 And at its close they shall acquire houses through their righteousness, and a house shall be built for the Great King in glory for evermore.  And after that, in the NINTH WEEK, the righteous judgement shall be revealed to the whole world, and all the works of the godless shall vanish from all the earth, and the world shall be written down for destruction. And all mankind shall look to the path of uprightness.  And after this, in the TENTH WEEK in the seventh part, there shall be the great eternal judgement in which He will execute vengeance amongst the angels.  And the first heaven shall depart and pass away, and a new heaven shall appear, and all the powers of the heavens shall give sevenfold light. And after that there will be MANY WEEKS WITHOUT NUMBER FOR EVER, and all shall be in goodness and righteousness, and sin shall no more be mentioned for ever. [Enoch 91:10 -17 - R H Charles’ translation]

Weeks 1-7 of Enoch’s prophecy (previous post) closed with the statement that a seven part “instruction” concerning God’s intentions towards all creation would be provided for the elect and righteous alive during the time of tribulation (En91:10 Charles translation). I linked this to the patriarch’s still more remarkable prediction that “books will be given to the righteous and the wise to become a cause of joy and uprightness and much wisdom – they shall believe in them and rejoice over them, and then shall all the righteous who have learnt from them all the paths of uprightness be recompensed” [En104:12-14].

The age to come

That is immediately followed by the passage quoted above, which as is well known is out of sequence within the Book of Enoch as compiled. It concerns weeks 8-10 which commence with the resurrection of the righteous followed by a culling of the wicked. As in canonical Revelation (ch20), the earth then continues for a period of time after the righteous have been resurrected, before (in Enoch’s language) being “written down for destruction” to make way for a new heaven and new earth. This is thought-provoking in itself – that the book of Revelation written towards the end of the first century AD should corroborate Enoch’s premillennial perspective (the earth continuing after the resurrection of the righteous and judgement of the wicked), given that the latter was certainly composed BC, I believe by Enoch himself.  

In comparing the two accounts, Enoch gives more detail of events in the age to come but notably makes no clear reference to the return, ongoing presence or role of the Lord Jesus Christ. But again, in view of when it was written that is not so surprising. For references to the Lord and Saviour of mankind were relatively rare and heavily veiled in the canonical Old Testament. Yet He is referred to Enoch, where the author wrote:

 And at that hour that Son of Man was called near the Lord of the spirits, and his name before the Head of days. And before the sun and the signs were created, before the stars of heaven were made, his name was called before the Lord of the spirits. He will be a staff to the just and the holy, upon which they will support themselves and not fall, and he will be the light of the nations, and he will be the hope of those who are sick in their hearts. All who live upon the earth will fall down before him and bend the knee to him, and will bless and praise him and will sing psalms to the name of the Lord of the spirits. For this purpose he was chosen and hidden before him before the world was created, and he will be before him to eternity. And the wisdom of the Lord of the spirits has revealed him to the holy and the just, for he preserves the portion of the just, because they have hated and despised this world of injustice, and have hated all its deeds and ways in the name of the Lord of the spirits; for in his name they will be saved, and he will be the revenger of their lives [En48:2-7 Schodde translation – my highlighting].

The age to come is likely to spring some surprises in terms of what was foretold in the New Testament. That was certainly the case when the Old Testament age gave way to the New. And not only concerning Jesus, but also what Paul twice referred to as “my gospel” – his revelation that the Messianic community would no longer be exclusively Jewish – God’s secret plan that Paul outlines in Ephesians chapter three. Jesus had hinted along those lines in some of His parables, but the Old Testament prophets had understood that the Jews would continue to be “the children of the kingdom” even after the coming of the Messiah. They alone were God’s elect, His priesthood for the world. Gentiles would be enlightened by them and pardoned if they came to acknowledge the Lord – but it was not envisaged they would be granted “the same gift of salvation” as the Jews resulting in eternal life or have “an inheritance with those being sanctified” (Acts11:17-18 & 26:18). Note from Acts11, this was something of a surprise even to Peter, whereas the risen Lord had made the matter much clearer to Paul (see also Rom11:11,12,15).

Such unforetold developments are one reason I have no intention of trying to throw light on what either Enoch or John in Revelation indicate shall occur in the earthly age that follows this one. It is not my territory, by which I mean I have no insights on the matter. Such prophetic insights as I have received (which turned much of my earlier understanding on its head) concern God’s providential intentions for the current age and indeed for the Gentile peoples of Old Testament times. That has enabled me to demonstrate from Scripture that divine benevolence is not restricted to the Jews and the Church but to all redeemable creation, and I have set the case out in The Little Book of Providence. Some recent testimonial posts have indicated why, after many years of uncertainty, I believe I am intended such a role. Also, that such a provision is in accordance with prophetic expectations, more especially that of Enoch.

The resulting seven-part synopsis resolves many longstanding biblical tensions and doctrinal conundrums, resulting in a presentation (albeit written in an unscholarly manner) that I am convinced is unprecedentedly coherent, consistent with God’s nature as revealed in Scripture and in line with how the Church and the world has actually panned out to date. If the Lord chooses to own such a work, readers of sufficient number and influence will in due time come to share that view so that the matter can be taken forward.

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The LITTLE BOOK OF PROVIDENCE:

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