Monthly Archives: January 2013

Patience–Enduring the “Sufferings of This Present Time”

As the sons and daughters of God, we are to add certain spiritual attributes of God’s “divine nature.”  This is how we become “partakers of His divine nature” (II Peter 1: 4-7).  This assures our inheritance as His sons and daughters. These attributes are added in sequence–in layers, if you will.  To our faith we add virtue, and then knowledge onto it.  Then we add temperance to that knowledge.  Then we add patience onto the temperance.

Patience.  Patience.  Oh, how we all need patience in this hurry-scurry world!  This world that careens through our conscious hours robs us of this important godly essence–patience.  The swirling, rushing pace of our 21st Century lives conspire against us in our search for truth.  Patience is needed to even read this simple article on patience.

For all that we see and hear is temporary.  We will be able to temper the appetites of our earthly bodies more easily when we realize how transitory–how utterly perishable our bodies are.  When we believe this and wholeheartedly acknowledge the need for God’s promise of our immortal house from heaven, we will more easily shift our focus from the temporary to the eternal.

The Next Step in Adding the Divine Nature

And that next step is adding patience to the temperance.  But in order to add patience, which is the ability to endure the sufferings of Christ, we must understand just what those sufferings are.  Paul speaks of them when he writes, “The sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Rom. 8: 18).  This “glory” is, of course, that destiny of God’s elect after they have grown spiritually to full maturity, which is the evidence of them partaking of the divine nature.

But those “sufferings” spoken of by the apostle is the sojourn we are experiencing in these mortal earthly bodies.  For “we have this treasure [of the Spirit] in earthen vessels” (II Cor. 4:7).  And that is the root of our current spiritual problem.  Our bodies are, alas, mere temporary bottles holding the water of the Spirit.

“This present time” in which these sufferings are being endured is our time now  in our earthly bodies.  Our perishable fragile mortal bodies will too soon return to dust.  Now is our time of waiting with long patience, trusting God will deliver us from the long sleep that awaits us, tucked in dust in the tomb of the earth.

Temporarily housed in our earthly tabernacles at “this present time,” we have a universal thirst that yearns to be quenched.  And that desire is to live on.  And whether cognizant of it or not, we are waiting in “earnest expectation…for the manifestation of the sons of God” (Rom. 8: 19).

And so we who have a portion of His Spirit, for a dry season at present, find ourselves trapped in a shell that will die soon.  And so we wait for our forerunners, the sons of God to be unveiled first, for they are the firstfruits.  And so we are waiting for these offspring of the Almighty to come onto the scene.

For they will give His other children great hope when they are seen striding this earth–a hope that they, too, can be “delivered from the bondage of corruption,” which is the cruel slavery that our present mortal bodies inflict on us in our new spiritual journey.

Slaves to Our Own Mortality

Our earthly bodies are decaying as they grow older each day, and we are not free to ascend and descend at will.  We are on a timetable, slated to expire, most likely before the age of 80–whether we want to or not.  That’s slavery; that’s being in bondage to our own mortality.  That is the “bondage of corruption.”  In the earthly sense, we are slaves to our own decay and impending death.

In our youth we were not aware of this impending decay of our earthly body.  Hence, we thought ourselves invincible and immortal.  But as we get older and see our bodies deteriorate, we see that we become the slaves to our own bodily limitations.  We begin to admit that we cannot do what we once did.  Our age, brought on by the ravages of time, becomes our master and limits us and dictates to us what we can and cannot do.  This is the “bondage of corruption.”

Aging is the accumulation of many miles and years on the human body.  Aging is that onerous sign announcing our impending physical passing.  But this daily physical decay of our bodies does not work on our spirits.  We can take heart in this, that “though our outward man perish, our inward man is renewed day by day” (II Cor. 4: 16).  And this renewing is the “partaking of the divine nature,” the adding to our faith of which we speak.

So why death?

And so we ask God, Why do we have to die?  Why give us a mortal body, God?  Why subject us to all this suffering?  The short answer: God created us “subject to vanity.”  He deliberately subjected us to mortality in hope that we would be delivered into immortality.  He made us to suffer this mortal existence in hope that we would seek Him, who is Life Himself, and in so doing find eternal life, which is the fulfillment of His promise to them who seek Him and love Him.

God has dangled death ever before us so that we would seek Him.  He reasoned that our looming demise would spur us to seek Him for answers to our dilemma.  Surely we would call on Him, the Giver of Life, to help us solve this problem of mortality if we were confronted with the sadness of first, the loss of loved ones and then, finally, ourselves.

God provided a law ingrained into the universe, as sure as gravity, that if we seek Him for the truth, we would find it.  “Seek and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you,” Christ promised (Matt. 7: 7).

And so, confronted by the sufferings of our mortal worries, we turn to God.  And His words resound through the ages to our hearts and tell us the answer to the riddle of our faint existence.  He tells us that He is the Fount from which the blessing of immortality flows.  And it starts with believing in the resurrection of His Son.  And latching onto that faith in Him begins our own new life, ending in the complete inheritance of a new spiritual body that will swallow up this old earthly one (I Cor. 15).

He seems to be saying, Surely when they see my Son arise from the dead, they will turn to Me in great hope that My resurrection power will one day raise them up as well.

His resurrection is our hope to escape the dusty tombs of death.  And yet, the sufferings continue.  And as He teaches us and helps us to endure all things, we add patience.  For patience is that part of God’s nature that endures.  It lasts.  And as we continue our sojourn in these earthly vessels, He grants to us patience by infusing us with experiences that helps us endure, that gives us rather things to endure.

Yes, “tribulation worketh patience” or “suffering produces endurance” (Rom. 5: 3).  Earthly wisdom shuns all sufferings.  The wisdom from above prescribes it.  That is why He allows us to suffer–so that we can become like Him.  For He planned those very steps of suffering for Himself, and if we want to be His sons and daughters, we must suffer with Him.  That’s a tough one.  That is why “few are chosen” (Matt. 22: 14).  Those chosen are the elect, and they will submit to the plan along with its sufferings, much like those chosen for our Special Forces endure the sufferings that the training entails.  It all comes with the territory.  To reign with Him we must suffer with Him (II Tim. 2: 12).   Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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More on Adding Temperance to Knowledge

In previous posts we have seen that in order to secure “an entrance…into the everlasting kingdom of our…Savior,” we must add certain spiritual attributes to the faith that God has endowed us with [1].  In so doing, we “give diligence” in making “our calling and election sure” [2].

We are told by the apostle Peter to add “temperance” to the knowledge of God and His plan for our perfection.

Since our very spiritual growth in Christ is in the balance here, a bit deeper examination of this word “temperance” is fruitful.  It is translated from the Greek word egkrateia (#G1466).  Thayer’s Lexicon states that it is “the virtue of one who masters his desires and passions, especially his sensual appetites.”

It is derived from a Greek adjective egkrates (#G1468), meaning “strong, robust; having power over; mastering, controling, curbing, restraining.”  So “temperance” is from Greek words meaning “to have control over.”

So How Does the Holy Spirit Help Us Get Control Over Bodily Appetites?

Knowing the truth will make us free, Christ said–of whatever ails us [3].  “Ye shall know the truth…”  Know.  There’s that “knowledge” spoken by Peter again, as in “add to you faith virtue, and to virtue knowledge…”  What knowledge?  The knowledge of truth, which is the mind of Christ, simply put.  Yes, the mind of Christ–His thoughts, plans, and purposes.  He did say, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” [4].  So, first knowing Christ’s thoughts, plans, purposes and His word, and then doing them–this will make us free of and give us control over sensual appetites.

There is another “knowing,” and this one is huge.  “Knowing this, that our old man was crucified with [Him], that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin” (Romans 6: 6).  Our old sinful self, in God’s eyes, was crucified with Christ on the cross.  And our old sin-soaked heart, which was enslaved to sin, is now free from all fleshly pulls.  This knowledge, straight out of the plan and purpose and mind of our Savior, is the truth that makes us free from unrighteous haunts.  Period.

Now.  The ball is in our court.  We are forced by Him to either believe this truth, which is His word and plan written down in plain English, and thereby be freed from the slavery of sin and sinning, or we continue on in unbelief.  That is the choice.  Chosing to believe this truth opens up the way to add these spiritual qualities like temperance, that He has admonished us to add to our faith, thus enabling us to “go on unto perfection.”

Temperance, then, is an integral part of the character of one who is an elder of the body of Christ, one who is mature [5].  This is a description of a temperate man, one who has his earthly body under control, leading him to be able to “hold fast the faithful word as he has been taught.”  After adding temperance, the man of God will have the power to not soon be shaken through any temptations of the devil.  He will be able to walk in the power of the word of God.

The elect of God will begin to realize that gaining control over the earthly body is a necessary pre-requisite in fully becoming the manifested sons and daughters of God.  And because temperance is one of the fruits of the Spirit, the stronger the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives, the more temperance we will exhibit (Gal. 5: 22-23).  More Spirit in us, more self-control.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance…And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the passions and lusts.”  This last sentence is the very next verse, v. 24.  Isn’t it astounding that the word goes right back to being crucified with Christ?  In another translation we read, “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires” (NIV).

Here it is in plain black and white:  There is a direct correlation of having the “fruit of the Spirit” operating in our lives and being crucified with Christ.  In fact, the crucifixion with Christ of our old nature is the very key in receiving His Spirit, which in turn yields the fruit of the Spirit in our lives–one of which is temperance or self-control.  It is much easier to control one’s self after knowing and then believing that it is dead.

Earlier in his letter to the Galatians, Paul writes, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” (2: 20).  And there it is.  Our bodies live on now, but it is not our old selves anymore living in them.  But rather it is Christ’s Spirit that lives now in us.  And this life that we live is because of His faith in His own plan, now believed on by us, that by believing that He is raised from the dead, we too are now risen “to walk in a newness of life.”

It is this Rock that we are building up each other as the temple of God in the earth.  This is the solid Rock foundation that we must build upon.  Because the weather coming soon to this earth is going to shake and crumble all houses not built on the right understanding of His word, plan, purpose, and thoughts.  If it is built on a faulty foundation, then the house will come crashing down.  Tribulation is coming upon the earth, and it will touch us all.  Only He is our safety net–not some imagination of a rapture that someone dreamed up in the 19th century.

The Great Tribulation is coming.  We must prepare by first “knowing the truth.”  For Satan is going to deceive many in these latter days.  “Let no man deceive you,” Christ warned.  For the “falling away” or apostacy is already in full odious bloom.  The churches have been duped and lied to by false teachers and false prophets.  Many pastors are ignorant of this deception and yet, they continue to pollute the flock and inoculate them with poisonous doctrines and concepts.  But “the wise will understand” (Dan 12; 10).

[1]  https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2012/11/27/the-additions-to-your-faith-prerequisites-of-receiving-immortality/

https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2012/12/02/add-to-your-faith-virtue-gods-strength-and-power-2-peter-1-5/

[2]  II Peter 1: 10

[3]  John 8: 32

[4]  John 14: 6

[5]  Titus 1: 7-9

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So Much Unbelief–Is It God’s Doing?

Ever wonder why there is so much unbelief out there?  You know, that stone cold stare of incredulity when you tell someone about Christ’s ability to “deliver us from the power of darkness” and to miraculously change our lives.  Why is that?  We can’t help but wonder how anyone could not believe in Him.

We have seen recently that it is God’s faith, His belief in Himself and His plan and His ability to perform it–it is His faith that He gives to certain individuals in the earth.  It’s the “faith once delivered” to His people.  After receiving it, we are admonished to “add to your faith” seven spiritual attributes that helps us “grow up into Him.”  They help us to always be bearing the “fruit of the Spirit” [1].

And with these things come the true blessings God has promised.  But why, then is there so much unbelief?

In fact, most Christians start out “setting the woods on fire”–telling everyone and expecting everyone to respond and believe them about our Savior.  But most of us settle down a bit and scratch our heads and wonder, Why don’t more people believe?

Why So Much Unbelief?

Some may say, Well, their hearts are hard, and they have rejected Him.  This is partially true.

Others might say, The devil has deceived the unbelievers.  True again, but that is not the whole truth.  This blessed news of living a forgiven, free, and happy life in Christ is hidden from the many “lost, in whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light…of Christ…should shine unto them” (II Cor. 4:4).  So, yes, the devil has blinded them spiritually so that they cannot believe.  But that is not the whole story or the cause.

Still others, looking more deeply with eyes that only the Father could give, will see that it is God behind the current glut of unbelief in the world.  What?  I say this not as an accusation against God, but more in awe of His ways, which are past finding out.  I’m going by what He said in His word.

“All Things Are of God”

The apostle John saw this deep truth and expressed it.  “But though He had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on him…Therefore, they could not believe.”  They could not believe?  Why couldn’t they believe?  They had all the miracles proving that it was God in Christ doing it all.  But they could not believe.  Why?  “Because Isaiah said, He has blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart, that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them (John 12: 37, 39-40).

God has blinded them?  Yes.  He is behind it; that’s a tough one.  John was quoting and elucidating what the Spirit was saying through Isaiah (6: 9-11).  And how long will the deafness and blindness of the masses last?  How long will the unbelief reign in the hearts of mortal Adamic man?

“And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate.  And the LORD (Yahweh) have removed men far away, and there be a great forsaking in the midst of the land” (v. 11).

The masses will continue on in unbelief until the great catastrophes of the time of the end come upon the whole earth.  When destruction comes upon the people, then they will cry unto God, and then their hearts will turn and believe.

Catastrophes That Happened to Ancient Israel Warn Us of Things To Come

We need only look into the scriptures of truth to see the type and shadow of our modern day reality.  The children of Israel in the “Old Testament” serve as a painful example of this, for “that which has been is now, and that which is to be has already been” (Eccl. 3: 15).  “These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the fulfillment of the ages has come” (I Cor. 10: 11, NIV).  If we want to know how it is all going down in our day, we need only to look in the scriptures.

Many will begin to seek God and to believe Him when the disasters come to this earth, just like in the days of old.  The nation of Ancient Israel would enjoy the blessings of God, then they would get fat and complacent and forget God, and then He would allow other nations to conquer them and desolate their lives, and then they would cry unto Yahweh, and He would hear and come down and deliver them.  There would be revival for a time, and then the cycle would begin again.

We are in that same cycle right now.  We are growing fat and sassy.  Look at America, allowing our representatives in government to allow and fund the killing of our innocent children, and they have taken prayer and thanksgiving to the God of the Bible out of our schools.  And the people have allowed this!  And they have taken our complete money system out of the hands of the people’s representatives and given it over to a private banking corporation, a central bank.  I won’t even get into all the military adventures that have cost millions of innocent lives, with all their false flags.

We have sinned as a nation in so many ways, and most of us are complicit in these atrocities through our lack of courage.  Most have drunk the kool aid they have given us and have taken the government as our sole benefactor.  We have grown fat and lazy and do not “look to the Rock from whence we are hewn.”

And so, at the end of this age, which is coming very soon, God will bring us down.  He will break the pride of our power and humble us through unimaginable catastrophes where cities will be wasted and destroyed during the horrendous “Great Tribulation Period” that will come upon the whole earth.  And it will touch all those who are alive on the earth; that includes Christians, His elect, those He has chosen out to first believe in Him [2].

There is an elect, a remnant, those chosen by Him to be “a kind of firstfruits,” those destined to be the first to trust in Him and believe Him.  And it is left to us to edify each other as best we can, sharing truth with those who can believe at this time.  Maybe all of the above is why Isaiah cried out, “Who has believed our report? (53: 1; John 12: 38).

And it is left to us that have His faith to add to it the seven spiritual qualities  that will help us grow into full maturity.  Somebody is going to do it; it might as well be us.

Of course, the churches do not teach this.  You won’t hear this on Sunday morning anywhere, but I’ll stick with Isaiah and John.   They saw deeply into the heart of God, revealing secrets to those who can believe at this present time.  For most can’t–at this time.        Kenneth Wayne Hancock

1.  https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2013/01/05/the-faith-of-god-in-himself-now-in-us/

https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2012/11/27/the-additions-to-your-faith-prerequisites-of-receiving-immortality/

https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2012/12/02/add-to-your-faith-virtue-gods-strength-and-power-2-peter-1-5/

2.  https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2008/08/05/no-pre-tribulation-rapture-gods-elect-on-earth-during-tribulation/

https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2012/04/07/dont-depend-on-the-rapture-all-christians-going-through-great-tribulation/

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The Faith of God in Himself Now in Us

Faith is extremely important but often misunderstood.  It is not us believing in something.  That is not the true faith of God.   No.  The true faith of God comes from Him to us, not from us about Him.  It is His belief in Himself that He gives to us.

Faith Is Not Something We Have to Muster Up

It is the “faith once delivered to the saints” (Jude 3).  Faith is a spiritual commodity from God that has been delivered to the people of God.  Who delivered it?  The Creator Yahweh did.  Faith is not something that has to be mustered up by His people.  We rather must receive it from Him.  It is something that originates from out of His nature and is given to us.  “For every good and perfect gift comes down from the Father of lights.” That includes faith.

It is His faith that is transplanted into our hearts.  It is not something we muster up and finally believe about Him.  His faith in us is the first part of His divine nature to enter into the human heart.  But what is it exactly?  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1.

God Has Assurance in the Things that He Hopes For

“Things hoped for…”  Because we are naturally egocentric, we think that it is the things we hope for.  No.  What does God hope for?  What are the desires of His heart?  What has He purposed?   Long  before  we were ever born, He saw us in our down-trodden state of sin and misery.  He also saw us rise with Him by His Spirit to vanquish sin and death in our lives.  He believed that this was a reality—that this was substance—having not yet seen it come to pass.  He believed and so therefore spoke and said that it was so.  He believed the best about us and His plan—not having seen the evidence yet of its fruition.  We as changed individuals are evidence that the invisible Supreme Being is real.  We are His witnesses that He is God.  And if He believes in His work in us before it comes to full fruition, then we should, too.  He is our example.

His divine nature is positive, full of faith and power.  All of His promises are “yes.”  Nothing negative flows from His heart.  He is positive; His attitude is positive.  In fact, He calls those things that are not, that do not exist as yet, as though they did exist.  He said that He will be all in all eventually.  We should then, right now, begin to walk around as if He already is all in you and me.  This will take belief that “it is no longer I that lives but Christ that lives in me.”

He is positive, giving “life to the dead and calls that which does not exist as existing.”  This is He.  This is how He thinks.  He is positive about His capabilities.  He has absolutely no doubt about His reserves and His resolve to get done what He wants done.  And what He wants done is the multiplication, the reproduction of Himself, within His creation.  He is an invisible Spirit; He wants to see Himself in action in human form.  This is the witness that He talks about in Isaiah.  We are to be His witnesses that He is the invisible Spirit/God.  His faith believes that not only we can change, but that we will change—that we are changed!  He seeks people to worship Him in this spirit and attitude and in this truth.  He needs people to worship Him in this way—to believe the way He believes.

And it is to this faith, His faith, that we are to add several more  spiritual qualities as outlined by the apostle Peter (II Peter 1: 5-8).  These are the more advanced facets that the Holy Spirit gives to those going “unto perfection,” which is full maturity in Christ.                Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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{This is an excerpt from my book The Unveiling of the Sons of God, which you can read at the top of this page.  Just click “Ebook: The Unveiling…”}

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