Christian Churches of God
Pentecost at Sinai
(Edition 3.1 19940514-20000510)
This work follows on from the papers on the Exodus involving both Moses and the gods of Egypt (see the paper Moses and the Gods of Egypt) and also Moses and the Exodus (see the paper The Passover). It deals with exactly who gave the Law at Sinai and how. The sequence of the move to Sinai is explained in terms of the meaning of the stops and a better understanding emerges. The power of the host as given from God is also examined in relation to the giving of the Law and the events at Sinai.
We have noted the sequence of the Exodus from Egypt under Moses in the paper The Passover (No. 98). The move from Egypt commenced on 15 Nisan from an assembly area at Rameses to which the Israelites moved from all over Goshen. From there a force of some six hundred thousand men accompanied by their women and children and their aged, together with a mixed multitude of non-Israelites and the stock of both groups left for Succoth (to tabernacle or booth) (Ex. 12:37-38).
The journey was a planned action to take the Israelites to Sinai in order that they might receive revelation from God. The Israelites were taken out of Egypt by the Angel of the Presence or the Angel of YHVH. It was through this Angel that God chose to reveal His Law. In Judges 2:1-4, the Angel of YHVH speaks of the covenant he mediated between God and the Children of Israel.
Judges 2:1-4 Now the Angel of the Lord (YHVH) went up from Gilgal to Bochim. And he said, 'I brought you up from Egypt and brought you into the land which I swore to give to your fathers. I said, I will never break my covenant with you, and you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; you shall break down their altars.' But you have not obeyed my command. What is this you have done? So now I say, I will not drive them out before you; but they shall become adversaries to you, and their gods shall be a snare to you'. When the angel of the Lord (YHVH) spoke these words to all the people of Israel, the people lifted up their voices and wept.
This Angel was the Angel in the cloud of the Exodus at the Red Sea and in the wilderness (Acts 7:36). He was the Angel in the bush that spoke to Moses (Acts 7:30,35). He was the Angel who gave the Law to Moses (Acts 7:38,53; Gal. 3:19). He was the Angel who spoke for God at Sinai (Acts 7:38). This Angel was the spiritual meat and drink with which Israel, being baptised to Moses by the Angel in the cloud (1Cor. 10:2), partook in the wilderness. That spiritual meat and drink was the spiritual Rock which followed them. That Rock, the Angel of YHVH, was Jesus Christ (1Cor. 10:4). God is the Rock or mountain from which Christ was hewn.
An error is being propagated that the logos as the word of God does not refer to a spokesman but rather means the utterance of God as rational thought – so that the Angel of YHVH did not declare the Law but rather the entity which declared the Law at Sinai was God as the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Thus all acted at Sinai. This is false.
John makes this point very clear at John 1:18 and 1John 4:12. He said:
1John 4:12 No man has seen God, at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected in us (KJV).
1John 4:13-15 By this we know that we abide in [H]im and [H]e in us, because [H]e has given us of [H]is own Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent [H]is Son as the Savior of the World. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God (Annotated RSV).
John was writing well after the death of Christ and even after the destruction of Jerusalem. He was clearly making a distinction between God and Christ. He was distinguishing between Christ whom men had seen and God whom they had not seen at any time either at Sinai or elsewhere.
In the Gospel, at John 1:18, John says:
Theon oudeis eooraken poopote.
God no man has seen never;
monogenes theos ho
[the] only begotten [onlyborn] God the [one]
oon eis ton kolpon tou patros,
being in the bosom of the Father,
that one declared [?him].
The distinction here is of Theon and Theos. The Theon whom no one has ever seen and the onlyborn God, theos, which is another entity who spoke or declared on behalf of this Theon (him is added incorrectly). This theos was at Sinai. He was the logos who was in the beginning with the God (Theon) (John 1:1). The beginning (arche) at John 1:1 was the beginning of the material creation. The translation of John 1:1 is false as is the translation of Titus 2:13 which is alleged to say:
awaiting our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.
The text says:
expecting the blessed hope and appearance of the glory of the great God and Savior of us Christ Jesus (see Marshall's Interlinear RSV).
Christ is the appearance of the glory of the God and Saviour of us. He is not that God. But Trinitarians render the text to infer that he is. This error formed the basis of the Binitarian error which was adopted by some Churches from the 1960s (see article Is Jesus God by Herbert W Armstrong, reprint Good News, December 1982). This error was coupled with the error in understanding the intent of Philippians 2:6 which talks about the form of God which is construed to confer his nature and thus further erroneously extrapolated to imply that he was that God.
The assertion that it was God who spoke at Sinai and that it was the three hypostases acting is quite incorrect. The text in the paper The Angel of YHVH (No. 24) show that it is utterly wrong to assert that Moses saw God Most High or God the Father at Sinai, or at any time during the Exodus, or ever. He spoke to His messenger the Angel of YHVH who was His Presence and who carried His name. In Exodus 23:20-21 God said, through the Angel, that He would send His angel to guard Israel during the Exodus.
Exodus 23:20-21 Behold, I send an angel before you, to guard you on the way and to bring you to the place which I have prepared. Give heed to him and hearken to his voice, do not rebel against him, for he will not pardon your transgression; for my name is in him (emphasis added).
The concept here is that this Angel carried the name of God as an authority. I will be what I will become gave the name Yahweh or Yahovah meaning He causes to be to this subordinate elohim. God anointed this elohim of Israel as we know from Psalm 45:6-7.
Psalm 45:6-7 Your Divine throne endures for ever and ever. Your royal sceptre is a sceptre of equity; you love righteousness and hate wickedness. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness above your fellows;
This God was anointed by his God with the oil of gladness above his fellows or partners (metoxous, LXX) or comrades as it is rendered in Hebrews 1:8-9 where this entity is clearly the Messiah. Thus Messiah is a subordinate God, but nevertheless God is One. The development of the trinitarian argument is in the paper The Development of the Neo–Platonist Model (No. 17).
The Messiah brought Israel out of Egypt. He acted under instructions from God through the Holy Spirit. He was known as the Messenger of God. This is explained in the paper The Angel of YHVH (No. 24).
The calculation for Pentecost is noted in Leviticus 23:9-21.
Leviticus 23:9-14 And Jehovah spoke to Moses, saying, Speak to the sons of Israel, and you shall say to them, When you come into the land which I am giving to you, and you have reaped its harvest, and have brought in the sheaf, the beginning of your harvest, to the priest, then he shall wave the sheaf before Jehovah for your acceptance; on the morrow of the sabbath the priest shall wave it. And you shall prepare a lamb in the day you wave the sheaf, a perfect one, a son of a year, for a burnt offering to Jehovah. And its food offering shall be two-tenth parts of flour mixed with oil, a fire offering to Jehovah, a sweet fragrance; and its drink offering, a fourth of a hin of wine. And you shall not eat bread and roasted grain and fresh ears until this self same day, until you have brought the offering of your God; it is a never-ending statute throughout your generations in all your dwellings.
The eating of bread and roasted grain and fresh ears between the first holy day and the Wave Sheaf Offering was forbidden forever. As Exodus 12 requires unleavened bread to be eaten with the Passover meal on 15 Nisan, the interpretation must therefore be that it is the new grain that must not be used until the Wave Sheaf Offering has been waived. Thus the integrity of Christ as the first-fruits is retained. An examination of Joshua 3:15; 4:18-19; 5:1-8,11-12 shows the significance of the eating of the new corn of the Promised Land, after the circumcision. The manna ceased when the old corn was eaten. Judaism construes from this that this day, 16 Nisan, was therefore the day of the wave offering and that the wave offering is therefore always on 16 Nisan. There are two explanations for this situation, which negate the rabbinical position. The first possibility is that this could have been a year in which the Passover must also have been on 15 Nisan as a Saturday. The wave offering therefore would have occurred on the next day. This is rare but it does occur, as it did in 1994. The text however makes it clear that it was of the old corn that was eaten (see the paper The Wave Sheaf Offering (No. 106b)).
Joshua 5:11-12 And they did eat of the old corn of the land on the morrow after the passover, unleavened cakes, and parched corn in the selfsame day. 12 And the manna ceased on the morrow after they had eaten of the old corn of the land; neither had the children of Israel manna any more; but they did eat of the fruit of the land of Canaan that year. (KJV)
The Interlinear Bible follows the text of the KJV. The word translated as old corn is the Hebrew word ’âbûwrwr. This means passed or kept over and is used only of stored grain (see SHD 5669). The Soncino does not translate this word but renders it as produce of the land as from verse 11. The rabbinical explanation of verse 11 is that it means produce of the land since the manna ceased to fall, as stated in the next verse.
The Rabbis held that the new harvest is meant, the Israelites first having brought the wave-offering of the ‘sheaf’ (omer), in accordance with Lev. xxiii. 10-14, the morrow after the Passover here being identical with the morrow after the Sabbath there (Rashi).
This explanation (and only by Rashi) is entirely false. The word for old corn which can only refer to stored grain is ignored entirely in the Soncino and in the rabbinical explanations.
The morrow after the Sabbath in Leviticus was interpreted as being the weekly Sabbath by first-century Judaism and also by the Christian Church and is still interpreted as such by Christianity even today. Until the destruction of the Temple and the dispersion in 70 CE, the calendar system was organised according to the system of the Sadducees.
From the dispersion, the Pharisees began to assert their methods of the determination of the calendar. The reformation of the calendar under rabbi Hillel II in c. 358 CE saw Pentecost set at 6 Sivan. Perhaps this was a political exercise; perhaps not. There is no doubt that the method of determining Pentecost counts fifty days from the Wave Sheaf Offering and ends on the day after the seventh Sabbath. The day after the seventh Sabbath can only be the first day of the week, or Sunday. The attempt at making 6 Sivan the Sabbath and then declaring the next day Pentecost Two is an obvious ruse. The explanation of the text is clear. Christianity has understood the method for two thousand years. Ancient Judaism understood it. Why then does rabbinical Judaism deliberately ignore a text so that they keep Pentecost on a fixed day when the whole idea of Pentecost is literally to count the fifty days? What is there to count with a fixed date? How is the day after the seventh Sabbath not a Sunday?
The explanation is perhaps found in the significance of the Sign of Jonah and its implications for Christianity. The explanation of the adoption of 6 Sivan involves the Quarto-deciman conflict which caused dispute and which Rome tried to suppress (see the paper The Quartodeciman Disputes (No. 277)). The rabbinical authorities would be unavoidably drawn into conflict with internal Christian politics, which they seemingly sought to avoid. The Wave Sheaf Offering cannot have been on 16 Nisan in 30 CE (or 31-32 CE for that matter) and still have complied with the test that Christ set for the Church. The Sign of Jonah was that Christ was three days and three nights in the earth as Jonah was three days and nights in the belly of the great fish (see the paper The Sign of Jonah and the History of the Reconstruction of the Temple (No. 13)).
Matthew 12:39-41 But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: 40 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. 41 The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here. (KJV)
This was to be the only sign of Christ’s ministry. Thus anything that contradicts this sign is wrong. In 30 CE, 14 Nisan fell on a Wednesday. 16 Nisan therefore was a Friday (see the paper The Timing of the Crucifixion and the Resurrection (No. 159)). Christ was raised on Saturday evening and was waiting to ascend to heaven on Sunday morning when Mary Magdalene found him before dawn (Jn. 20:1). The Sign of Jonah thus required three days and nights. That, therefore, makes it impossible for the Wave Sheaf Offering to have been 16 Nisan. The events of 30 CE show that it was an impossibility as did the years 31-32 CE. Judaism knew that to be so. They also knew that Christ had to have been killed in 30 CE at the Passover which was in the third year from the commencement of John the Baptist’s ministry which was in the fifteenth year of Tiberius Caesar which commenced from October of 27 CE. John’s account makes it impossible for the crucifixion to be other than the third Passover from then. In other words, it can only have been the Passover of 30 CE according to John. Appeal is made to the Synoptic Gospels to intrude another fourth Passover into the sequence. However, the Passover preparation day of 14 Nisan in 31 CE was on Sunday 25 March and this was long held to have been the date of the crucifixion by Christianity until they realised that it absolutely precluded the Friday crucifixion and then it was dropped some time after the seventh century (see the paper The Calendar and the Moon: Postponements or Festivals? (No. 195)).
This confused situation actually suited Judaism in the centuries immediately after Christ’s death. Judaism had been losing converts to Christianity. It had fought a disastrous war with Rome. From the second century, Rome had become absorbed with the sun cults and the Friday crucifixion / Sunday resurrection error had commenced to be taught. This accorded with the eastern mystery cults and the cult of Dumuzi which long preceded Christianity. Dumuzi or Tammuz was a spring deity who died and was resurrected. This was a Friday death / Sunday resurrection. Thus it entered Christianity in the Quarto-deciman controversy. The pagan festival was called Easter and the Judeo-Christian festival was the Passover. This festival was rotational, based on the lunar calendar. The pagan Easter festival was solar/lunar based around the day of the sun but calculated from the beginning of the lunar month. The methods of calculating Easter, because of this fact, often varied from the Passover, even in the month. See the paper The Origins of Christmas and Easter (No. 235).
The method of the calculation seems to deliberately fall incorrectly (see the paper The Calendar and the Moon: Postponements or Festivals? (No. 195)). With the introduction of this error of Easter, Christianity then had to find a year in which the Passover was on a Friday. That event occurred in 33 CE, which was much too late to accord with the Gospel accounts. 30 CE was the absolute earliest that it could have been as there are three Passovers mentioned by John. The sequence allows for no more and no less. The fourth Passover error, to push the calculation to 31 CE, has 14 Nisan on Sunday 25 March as noted above.
A Passover in 33 CE suited Judaism. Firstly, it could then accommodate Christian requirements for a Wave Sheaf Offering on a Sunday from a Friday crucifixion. This had two effects. It seemed to agree with Rome – thus preventing persecution and yet still destroyed absolutely the genuine Christian arguments that Christ was the Messiah. It made it easy for rabbinical authority to demonstrate that Christ was not the Messiah and thus prevent, for two thousand years, the conversion of Judaism. Judaism was able to show, to its own people, categorically that Christ could not have been three days and three nights in the tomb from a Friday crucifixion and Sunday resurrection. It is also a simple and well understood fact that unless he was three days and nights in the tomb he was not legally dead by Judaic law. Moreover, by mistranslating the text, given the poor literacy of the general community in ancient Hebrew, they were able to continue the ruse more or less continually. From the failure of the Quarto-decimans they were more or less safe from both persecution and proselytism. Thus the 6 Sivan Pentecost suits both Judaism and modern Christianity for different reasons. It is completely incorrect and impugns the Sign of Jonah. No Christian can accept the 6 Sivan Pentecost and not deny the Messiah. It is thus a very clever ruse. Thus, Judaism has been defying God for two thousand years. Messiah had to be the Wave Sheaf Offering. The Wave Sheaf Offering had to have occurred on Sunday in 30 CE or Israel has no acceptance and no redemption.
It was for this reason that Mary Magdalene could not attempt to hold Christ at the tomb (Jn. 20:15-17). He was in the process, as he said, of ascending to God as the first-fruits. When that was accomplished, he could then return and allow humans, such as Thomas, to touch him. The ascension prior to Pentecost was the second and final ascent. It was not a harvest. Christ fulfilled that as the Wave Sheaf as he also fulfilled all sacrifice as the Passover Lamb.
The Wave Sheaf Offering was for the acceptance of Israel.
Leviticus 23:15-21 And you shall number to you from the next day after the sabbath, from the day you bring in the sheaf of the wave offering; they shall be seven perfect sabbaths; to the next day after the seventh sabbath, you shall number fifty days; and you shall bring near a new food offering to Jehovah; you shall bring in bread out of your dwellings for a wave offering, two loaves; they shall be of two-tenths parts of flour; they shall be baked with leaven; firstfruits to Jehovah. And beside the bread you shall offer seven lambs, perfect ones, sons of a year, and one bullock, a son of the herd, and two rams; they are a burnt offering to Jehovah, with their food offering and their drink offerings, a fire offering of sweet fragrance to Jehovah. And you shall, offer one he-goat for a sin offering, and two lambs, sons of a year, for a sacrifice of peace offerings. And the priest shall wave them, beside the bread of the firstfruits, a wave offering before Jehovah, besides the two lambs; they are holy to Jehovah for the priest. And you shall make a proclamation on this same day; it is a holy gathering to you. You shall do no work of service. It is a never-ending statute in all your dwellings throughout your generations (The Interlinear Bible).
The Wave Sheaf was the first of all harvests. That first-fruit of the harvest of God was Christ (see the paper The Wave Sheaf Offering (No. 106b)).
The day is noted here as the next day after the Sabbath, namely, the first day of the week or Sunday. Pentecost thus must fall every year on the Sunday following the seventh Sabbath, which is fifty days after the Wave Sheaf Offering. The Wave Sheaf Offering is clearly identified as the day following the weekly Sabbath of Unleavened Bread. Pentecost cannot therefore be counted from the first holy day of Unleavened Bread as has been claimed from the Hillel calendar – unless that day falls on a Sunday. The passages found in the LXX regarding Leviticus 23 and Pentecost used by proponents of a 6 Sivan Pentecost are examined in the paper The Omer Count to Pentecost (No. 173). The significance of the sacrifices of leavened bread is thus:
· The two leavened loaves represent the operation of the Holy Spirit from the two advents of the Messiah as priest Messiah and as king Messiah of Israel. Leaven, here, is a symbol of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the mechanism for this first-fruit harvest of the elect which occurs from Pentecost 30 CE.
· The seven lambs represent the seven spirits of God as the angels of the seven Churches.
· The bullock or young bull is the Bull of Ephraim, the Unicorn is Messiah (Deut. 33:17 cf. Num. 23:22 see also Jer. 31:18).
· The two rams represent the Two Witnesses of the Last Days.
· The sin and the peace offerings represent the reconciliation of the elect as the precursor to the general Atonement.
The ten steps or stages of the Exodus were reflected also in the ten candlesticks of the temple of God unfolding through the two thousand years. The progression of the Exodus from Rameses was in stages, the first stage being Succoth.
The assembly area at Rameses is not counted as a step. Similarly, John the Baptist was not counted as one of the ten lamps of the restoration.
From Succoth the Israelites went to Etham (ay-thawm a name of Egyptian origin, or Buthan: LXX) (Ex. 13:20; Num. 33:6-8). From Etham the Israelites went to Migdol (meaning tower) (Ex. 14:2; Num. 33:7) which is before Pi-hahiroth on the Red Sea. From Pi-hahiroth the Israelites crossed the Red Sea and moved on some three days journey to Marah (meaning bitter because they could not drink the water (or Picriae: LXX)) (Ex. 15:23; Num. 33:8-9). The waters of the Holy Spirit were made drinkable with the one tree (Ex. 15:25) which was Messiah.
From Marah they encamped at Elim (meaning palm trees; Bene Eliym means Sons of God) (Ex. 15:27; 16:1; Num. 33:9-10). There were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees. These were to symbolise the twelve tribes each fed from a spring which were to be the twelve judges of Israel. The seventy palms were to symbolise the seventy trees of the elders (Ex. 24:1,9), the Sanhedrin and the later council of elders (Lk. 10:1,17). The name Elim is derived from the word Eyil meaning strength, hence a chief, or ram, or pillar; hence an oak or strong tree. Hence the concept has the capacity to extend to the meaning of Elim or Eliym meaning mighty or gods as it appears in Psalm 89:8. The concept is thus an allegory of the Elohim or Eliym. The seventy are thus taken to be representative of the extended council of the heavenly Host. (Hence, the seventy (two) over 2,000 years forms the basis for the 144,000.)
Israel entered the Wilderness of Sin after Elim en route to Sinai on 15th of the second month (a Sabbath?). The LXX states that the encampment in the Wilderness of Sin commenced near the Red Sea from which point they entered the wilderness (Num. 33:11-12 LXX).
The people were given manna to eat at this point. Thus after the tree of Messiah and the springs and trees of the twelve and the seventy which Christ nominated before his death, they entered the wilderness. They murmured and were fed on meat of quails in the evening and in the morning. From then on, they were fed on the bread of Heaven, which is Jesus Christ.
The congregation of the people of Israel moved on from the Wilderness of Sin by stages, according to the commandment of the Lord (Ex. 17:1). They camped at Dophkah (meaning a knock, hence the call of the Morning Star. Al tarikh means in the Semitic, e.g. in Arabic, Morning Star or he who knocks or he who comes in the night – hence the Surah in the Koran).
Israel then camped at Alush (of uncertain meaning) and from Alush they camped at Rephidim (meaning a railing or balusters, hence to be spread out or along) (Ex. 17:1; Num. 33:14-15). Thus they travelled in staggered march although it seems that the final order of march from Numbers 10 was not established until the move from Sinai in the second year (Num. 10:11ff.). There was no water at Rephidim (Rephidin, Num. 33:14 LXX). This represents the commencement of the famine of the word of God. From Rephidim they arrived at Sinai.
These ten stages represented the ten stages of the restoration from Messiah through the seven Churches to the two witnesses arriving at the millennial reign and the new age. These ten stages are represented by the ten candlesticks of the Temple of Solomon where there are seventy candles and ten tables of shewbread. The last sequence of the two witnesses indicates a staggered and/or sequential grouping. Hence, the Host are not in one body or group.
Thus the sequence is from Egypt to the Law at Sinai and from the Law at Sinai to Messiah and again through the same sequence until the Messiah comes for the final time at the end of the age. See the paper The Ascents of Moses (No. 70).
The Israelites were attacked by the Amalekites at Rephidim (Ex. 17:8). Thus, just before the arrival at Sinai in the ninth encampment, the Israelites were attacked by the Amalekites. These people were to be utterly blotted out for their attack on Israel. This is to reflect the attack of the Last Days reflected by Revelation 12:15-16 (see the paper War of Hamon-Gog (No. 294)). The punishment is shown in the parable of the sheep and goats (Mat. 25:32-33), where the nations are judged by how they treat the elect over the period of trial. Moses had to hold up his arms over the entire period of the attack. To do this, Aaron and Hur had to seat Moses on a rock, which symbolised the power of God, and they stood at his right and left hand holding up his arms. These concepts prefigure the transfiguration (Mk. 9:4-5) and represent the elohim of Christ, Moses and Elijah. The power is of Christ by constant effort until the end of the Day of the Lord. Joshua of Ephraim fought all day until the going down of the sun (Ex. 17:13). After the Amalekites were defeated, Moses was visited by Jethro priest of Midian who sacrificed to the Lord (Ex. 18:12). The symbolism of this act may prefigure the reconciliations and conversions of the Last Days.
The establishment of the Orders of Judges certainly presages the restoration of the Law of the millennial system. Jethro stated that from the Exodus he knew that Jehovah was greater than all of the elohim.
Exodus 18:11 Now I know that Jehovah is greater than all the [Elohim]; truly, in the way in which they were proved against them (Interlinear Bible).
He is speaking here of The YHVH of Israel who is the High Priest of the elohim under Eloah or Elyon, God Most High.
On the third new moon when they set out from Rephidim and encamped at Sinai, Moses went up on the mountain to receive the Law and to be set apart as an holy people, a kingdom of priests (Ex. 19:5-6). This presages the comments in Revelation 4 and 5. Israel was borne on eagles wings (Ex. 19:4) as is the Church (Rev. 12:14). Those wings are the wings of Christ.
After three days, on the morning of the third day, in thick darkness, Moses was ordered up on the mountain. Moses was sent to bring Aaron up with him but the people were prevented as were the priests who had to be consecrated (Ex. 19:24). This consecration was symbolic of the preparation of baptism so that they would be ready to receive the power of Pentecost at the coming of Messiah. Firstly, the symbolism was of the giving of the Law, which is the structure of the nature of God and, secondly, the symbolism was of the power of the Holy Spirit from Messiah. Numbers 11:25 shows that the Spirit was poured out on the seventy elders. The Spirit caused those in the camp, namely Eldad and Medad, to prophesy which from Numbers 11:29 was taken as a challenge to the authority of Moses. Moses asked if they were jealous for his sake and said that he desired that the Lord's people were all prophets. The number from this sequence was seventy plus two.
The period leading up to the giving of the Law at Pentecost under Moses represented that whole period leading up to Messiah. He represented the writing of the Law within the hearts of Israel on a spiritual basis.
Moses then was given the Law as expounded in Exodus 20.
· And God spake all these words saying, I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
· You shall have no other gods [Elohim] before me.
· You shall not make for yourself a graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them or serve them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and the fourth generation of those that hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
· You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
· Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labour, and do all your work; but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son, or your daughter, your manservant, or your maidservant, or your cattle, or the sojourner who is within your gates; for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
· Honour your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land which the Lord your God gives you.
· You shall not kill.
· You shall not commit adultery.
· You shall not steal.
· You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.
· You shall not covet your neighbour's house; you shall not covet your neighbours wife, or his manservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his ass, or anything that is your neighbours.
The commandments are in two groups. The first four represent the love of God. The second six represent the love of the Host for one another. The Roman Catholic Church attempts to ignore the second commandment by merging it with the first and splitting the tenth into two; namely coveting your neighbour’s wife and his goods. The false division is derived from the order of items in Deuteronomy 5:21 which places wife before house in the sequence. It is necessary for the false division for them because they are blatantly in breach of the commandment by worship of images of saints and crosses and relics. To bow down before them or to worship before them is forbidden. It is a breach of the Law and thus the adherent is in breach of the whole Law.
The Law proceeds from the nature of God. Hence the elect, by means of God's divine power, namely the Holy Spirit, are partakers of the divine nature (2Pet. 1:3-4). Hence, the spiritual aspects of the Law are applied to the elect and they are judged on a higher plain. To covet any thing that is our neighbour’s leads to jealousy or, worse still, envy. The Oxford Universal Dictionary states envy to be:
related to invidere to look upon (in a bad sense) as 1. Ill will, malice, enmity -1707.b. as tr. L. invidia: Odium or unpopularity - 1679. 2. Harm, mischief - 1460. 3. Mortification and ill will occasioned by the contemplation of another's superior advantages... 4.a. Emulation -1635. b. A longing for another’s advantages 1723. 5. Desire; enthusiasm -1607.
1) trans To feel envy at the superior advantages of; to regard with discontent another's possession of (some superior advantage). Also in a more neutral sense: To wish oneself on a level with (another) in some respect or possessed of (something which another has). 2) To feel a grudge against - 1630. 3) trans To begrudge or to treat grudgingly...
It is one thing to use the term in the context of praise of another such as to say I envy you your happiness or your relationships or whatever. It is quite another to feel the impulse. For, to give in to envy or harbour the feelings, leads to the desire to attack and destroy the individual who possesses the desired attributes. Breach of the Tenth Commandment becomes an insipient breach of the First Commandment. The item envied becomes a God. Thus, the adversary fell into this sin when he sought to topple God. He envied God and sought to be as the Most High.
Isaiah 14: 9-17 Sheol from below is stirred for you, to meet you at your coming; it stirs up the departed spirits [rapha], all the he-goats of the earth. It has raised all the kings of the nations from their thrones. All of them shall answer and say to you, Are you also made as weak as we? Are you likened to us? Your majesty is lowered into Sheol; the noise of your harps. The maggot is spread under you; yea the worms cover you. O shining star, son of the morning, how you have fallen from the heavens! You weakening the nations, you are cut down to the ground. For you have said in your heart, I will go up to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God, and I will sit in the mount of meeting, in the sides of the north. I will rise above the heights of the clouds; I will be compared to the Most High. Yet you shall be brought out to Sheol, to the sides of the Pit. They that see you will stare and closely watch you, saying, Is this the man who made the earth tremble, shaking kingdoms, making the world like a wilderness, and who tore down its cities ... (The Interlinear Bible).
This text should be compared with Psalms 75:2; 82:1; Ezekiel 28:12-14. It is Christ who is now to receive the congregation and to judge uprightly. Promotion comes neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the Judge: He puts down one, and sets up another (Ps. 75:6-7). Thus Elohim stands in the congregation of the mighty [Heb. El or Gods]. He judges in the midst of the elohim (Ps. 82:1, see The Interlinear Bible). The Covering Cherub envied the position of God. Satan was created perfect but forfeited his position by rebellion.
Ezekiel 28:11-19 And the word of Jehovah was to me, saying, Son of man, lift up a lament over the king of Tyre (Satan see Companion Bible), and say to him, So says the Lord Jehovah: You seal the measure, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You have been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering, the ruby, the topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx and the jasper, the sapphire, the turquoise, and the emerald, and gold. The workmanship of your tabrets and of your pipes in you - in the day you were created, they were prepared. You were the anointed cherub that covers, and I had put you in the holy height of God, where you were. You walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. You were perfect in all your ways from the day you were created until iniquity was found in you. By the multitude of your trade they filled your midst with violence, and you sinned. So I cast you profaned from the height of God, and I destroyed you, O covering Cherub from among the stones of fire. Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendour. I have cast you to the ground. I will put you before kings that they may see you. By the host of your iniquities, by the iniquity of your trade, you have profaned your holy places; thus I brought a fire from your midst; it shall devour you, and I will give you for ashes on the earth in the sight of all who see you. All who know you among the peoples shall be appalled at you; you shall be terrors [to them], and you will not be forever (The Interlinear Bible (emphasis added)).
Thus this supernatural being was identified as a man. Thus he can be identified as the Covering Cherub of the man-headed system of Revelation 4:7. He was cast down to the pit or the abyss and he is to be dealt with and his power removed by stages – firstly, from his downfall and, secondly, from his reduction and removal from eternal life. To confine a supernatural force in space and time necessarily reduces his power because time, mass and energy, physically, are necessarily related expressions of the same thing.
Satan is destroyed by fire from within him. Thus he is to be the source of the lake of fire and, hence, the source of the energy that finally consumes his system (see also the paper The Judgment of the Demons (No. 80)).
This fire is similar to the fire or pur that proceeds from the mouth of the Witnesses in Revelation 11:5. The fire or puri that torments those who worship the beast and its image and receive its mark proceeds from the wrath of God. The smoke of the torment goes up to the Age of Ages, giving those with the mark no rest night and day (Rev. 14:10-11). Thus the smoke of the torment is not forever but merely unto the age when those with the mark of the beast who were led astray by the false prophet are killed and later resurrected. The beast and false prophecy are thrown alive into the Lake of Fire (limnen tou puros) which burns with brimstone.
The word is theioo and it is assumed that brimstone or sulphur is meant from the sense of brilliance of the word theios meaning divinity. Similarly Revelation 9:17 has theioodeis or brimstone-like (theion and eidos). The concept is thus to have the form of godliness or divinity. Hence, the Lake of Fire may represent a spiritual divine force and have nothing to do with brimstone whatsoever as the origin of the word is derived from the concept of the divine (i.e. as the spiritual power of Satan was).
These concepts relate to spiritual power at Pentecost. This again pointed forward to the sacrifice of Messiah and the receipt of the Holy Spirit.
Those with the mark of the beast will be basanizo (vexed or tormented) by puri and theioo before the holy angels and before the Lamb. The kapnos or smoke goes up unto the age of the ages (Rev. 14:11), i.e. until the Millennium. The same concept is that of the destruction of the man of sin or lawlessness being destroyed with the brightness (epiphaneia) of Christ’s coming (2Thes. 2:8).
Thus, the power of the Holy Spirit is from God conferring His nature which of itself confines and destroys the fallen Host. The Holy Spirit grants power to all the elect and is removed from any of the Host who disobey God. That capacity, of being destroyed, of necessity must extend to Christ or there is no effective test or comparison against which Satan was judged.
Christ qualified by obedience as the High Priest, effectively reconciling humanity to God. They had been effectively removed from God by the rebellion of Satan and the Host who had responsibility for them. The fallen Host will be judged by the actions of the elect, both by their obedience now and by their discharge of responsibility over the period of control of the Millennium. Hence, the fallen Host cannot be fully judged until we have completed our tasks.
The concepts of sin and rebellion are carried from the Tenth Commandment to the First. Rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft (1Sam. 15:23) because the concept stems from having a will in opposition or being external to the will of God. Satan, by seeking to impose his will over that of God, was in rebellion and, hence, polytheist. Monotheism stems from the concept of unification under the will of God. Hence, there is no elohim before or in place of God Most High. That commandment includes Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is neither before God nor beside Him or equal to or with Him, nor is he co-eternal to or with Him save by allocation at His right hand.
From the receipt of the Ten Commandments at Pentecost we see that the power of God is to be made available to us all. From the nature of God stems the whole of the Law and the Holy Spirit. Pentecost at Sinai was an extremely important time and pointed forward to the receipt of the Holy Spirit with the Church.
The concepts of the Commandments and the Law are in the example of Christ and the young man at Matthew 19:16-22.
Matthew 19:16-22 And behold one came up to him saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?" And he said to him, "Why do you ask me about what is good? One there is who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments." He said to him, "Which?" And Jesus said, "You shall not kill, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother, and, You shall love your neighbour as yourself." The young man said to him, "All these have I observed; what do I still lack? Jesus said to him, "If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give it to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come follow me." When the young man heard this he went away sorrowful; for he had great possessions.
This man had the love of mankind. However, he did not have his mind set on the love of God and the treasure in heaven.
The concepts involved are that only the last six commandments were mentioned, but the tenth was not identified other than as the requirement to love our neighbour as oneself – because by covetousness we attack and destroy our neighbour. From this commandment we fall into breach of the first four as the second, third and fourth follow on from the first and the first is broken from the tenth. Idolatry is rebellion and envy. From rebellion and envy springs hate. From hate springs violence. Similarly, from covetousness springs lust and adultery, which is violence to the person of our neighbour through his wife because they are one flesh. From covetousness springs theft and from theft also springs hate, because theft is violence. From false witness springs injustice caused by greed or fear – hence, unrighteousness.
Thus, if one commandment is breached, all are breached and we stand guilty of the Law. The Law stems from the nature of God and, hence, the Law is not an imposition but rather the result of conversion.
This whole process of the Law at Pentecost looks forward to baptism by fire. The Church did not simply receive a power. The power was of conversion by representation of the nature of God. The power gave the nature of God to the Church. That was the symbolism of the fire.
At Pentecost, the nature of God represented by fire enters the individual and inserts the Law in their heart.
We keep the Sabbath because of the Holy Spirit convicting us from our conversion, not from imposition but from the logic of our conversion. We are subordinate, being in the form of God, like Christ not seeing it as something to be grasped at to be equal with God (Phil. 2:6). Hence, we are obedient to His will as was our master the Messiah. From our understanding of the One True God and His son Jesus Christ we inherit eternal life (Jn. 17:3). Our obedience to the Law is the second prerequisite to that inheritance and flows from the understanding of the One True God, Eloah or God Most High who is our Father and the God and Father of Christ (Jn. 20:17).
The whole of the exodus up to Pentecost at Sinai reflected the development of Israel up to the ministry of Messiah and the crucifixion and the reconciliation for the receipt of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost 30 CE. The next phase of the journey of the 38 years in the wilderness represents the Church in the wilderness over 38 Jubilees and this will be explained in a later paper.
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