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Walking in the Spirit Comes from Knowledge of God’s Purpose of Reproducing Himself–Being About Our Father’s Business

We are admonished in God’s word to “walk in the Spirit” and to “abide in [Christ]” (Gal. 5: 16, 25; John 15: 4). But in order to get in step with the Spirit, we need to not only know the Spirit’s destination, but also the why and the how of God’s intentions. In order to abide in the Spirit, we need to know what the abiding entails and how to get there.

Simply put, in order for us to walk in the Spirit, we must first know what God is doing and where He is going. “Can two walk together except they be agreed?” (Amos 3: 3). We must agree with Him as to the where and when of His Spirit. He said that we are to have the mind of Christ and to think the way He does (Phil. 2: 5). Christ is doing His Father’s business (Luke 2: 49).

And the Father’s business is God reproducing Himself. This is His purpose, and He has a plan to finish His work.

God has given us many clues as to His purpose. Every living thing in both the vegetable and animal kingdom is striving to reproduce itself. Just look around. It is what it is all about. You striving in your life to find “the one,” that special one to mate with–the drive  has been put in your DNA by your Maker, and it is another clue as to His purpose: God is reproducing Himself, His Love, and His life. And He has the plan to make it happen. And we humans are the spiritual environment in which He is doing this reproducing of Himself.

Only when we understand His purpose and then believe it, will we be able to walk in the Spirit or abide in Him. If we are operating on a different spiritual wavelength in our worship, then we are not staying, remaining, nor abiding in Him and His purpose and His plan to achieve His purpose of reproducing Himself.

People of God, we say that we want a closer walk, a closer relationship with Him! This is our opportunity. Oh, to cease to be Christ’s servants and to become His friends! To hear Him say to us, “Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knows not what his lord does: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.” To be His friend! To be given this rare knowledge of what the Father is doing. To have Christ trust us so much that He with His great loving heart would include us in these secrets and mysteries of what the Father’s purpose is! To be trusted as a friend that knows what His Lord is doing! To be a part of His inner circle (John 15: 15).

And don’t tell me that it is not for us. That is a cop out. Two chapters later in that same flow of truth, Christ prayed for you and me: “Neither pray I for these alone [seated around the Last Supper table], but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one…and the glory which thou gavest me I have given them…” (John 17: 20). That’s us, brothers and sisters, if we can believe it.

He has promised us that if we abide in Him, whatever we ask, He will do. If we are walking and abiding with Him then what we ask will further His purpose. Those are the prayers that will get through–those that are asked by us to further His purpose and plan.

When We Have Another Purpose

But if we have an agenda and purpose and plan other than His, then we do not have true worship of the Father, for we will be following our own imaginations as to what will please God. God does not need another church building on another corner. He does not need another minister preaching the same sermons spoken a hundred years ago because those sermons, though they may be sincere, smack of stale incense wafting up into God’s nostrils. Small-hearted prayers for ourselves won’t get through the brass heavens to His ears.

Understanding His Purpose

However, when we do get His purpose and take it to heart and begin to work to help bring it to pass, then our power increases by His Spirit, and we become co-workers with Christ in doing the “Father’s business.”

Christ is all about doing the business of the Father. He is doing His will and finishing His work. The Father’s work? Reproducing Himself.

And what are we to do? We as members of Christ’s body need to be doing what Christ is doing, which is the same work. To do the works of God, we need to believe upon Him whom God has sent, and to finish His work. We are to bear witness to the truth about how God is reproducing Himself through the Seed Son. The works that God will do through us will be a witness that Christ the Seed has resurrected in us. The Seed Son will have germinated in us as we show forth the resurrection power through many signs and wonders done very shortly on this earth.

But it all starts with wisdom and knowledge, which happens to be the main ingredients of the first two “gifts of the Spirit.” Yes, as we get on the right road, God the Spirit begins to give us gifts to help us help Him fulfill His purpose. The first is “the word of wisdom,” and the second is “the word of knowledge” (I Cor. 12: 8).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Making Our Calling and Election Sure

We are admonished by the apostle Peter to “make our calling and election sure.” You mean that we have to do something? I thought it was all God and His grace that helps us to be what He wants us to be. It is, but there remains things we must do in order for the spiritual growth to take place.

We must study and pray and eventually fast that the culprit Unbelief might skulk away out of our spiritual lives. For it is unbelief that hinders our growth. But the Spirit has left us a roadmap, a way of cutting through the haze of phony doctrines about God.

Peter tells us in his second letter the steps we should take. He explains that to grow to full maturity, we must add seven attributes to our faith.

Peter writes to those who “have obtained like precious faith with us” (2 Peter 1: 1). The elect, God’s chosen ones for this high calling, have received the same exact precious faith that the early apostles received.

Now this comes about in our lives “through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ (Yahshua)” (v. 1). After we were convicted of our sin-guiltiness, and after we stepped out and laid down our old sinful self on the cross and died in revelation with the sacrificial Lamb of God, we, by believing that Christ was raised from the dead, receive a newly resurrected life by faith.

It is His faith that we have received. God believed in His own power to raise up the Lamb of God, and when we believed that, then we obtained that very same belief in the form of a “new heart” and a new spirit. By believing in His resurrection, we also believe that we were raised from the dead, for we were definitely dead in our sins—the walking dead, as it were. But now we are  alive from the dead, and we bear God’s very own faith in our bosom. As Paul said, “Old things are passed away,” and all things “are become new.” It is no longer the old Adamic man, writhing in the guilt of sin, that now lives, but rather the new man Christ, who has now begun His growth within our new hearts.

This is the faith we have obtained with Peter, Paul, James, and John. Faith is the foundation that must be added to, just like a builder adds walls, a roof, windows and doors to the foundation of the new house he is building. And it is this faith—God’s faith now in us, not our faith in Him—that must be added unto.

Adding Seven Spiritual Attributes Insures Three Things

We are to add to our faith “virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity [agape love]” (1: 5-7).

Peter writes that adding these seven spiritual attributes to His faith in us yields three major things in God’s plan for these latter days. First, they insure that we will not “be barren nor unfruitful” (1: 8). God wants us to bear “much fruit” and is glorified when we do (John 15: 8).

Second, the additions to our faith are how we solidify our standing as one of God’s elect; it is how we “make our calling and election sure.” Walking in these seven attributes of God’s nature insures our place in the elect. Or better put, those destined to be part of the elect will build their spiritual house with these attributes (1: 10).

Furthermore, it is through them that “an entrance shall be ministered unto [us] abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior” (1: 11).

Adding them is how we “partake of His divine nature” (1: 4). It is how we make our calling and election sure, how we never fall, how we will be full of spiritual fruit, how we will receive an entrance into His kingdom, and how we will “partake of His divine nature.” That sums up what spiritual growth is about. That is how important these things are as outlined by Peter in his Second Epistle, Chapter 1.

A Serious Assignment

Adding these attributes is a serious assignment that only the Spirit of truth can teach, for it is He that leads us into all truth. Truth being the key word.

“Truth is fallen in the streets,” says the prophet. And there is a famine in the land, a famine of the word of God. Because of this dearth, adding these seven attributes is a formidable task. Why? Peter in the very next chapter forewarns us of how the devil will hinder our growth in becoming God’s elect. He warns us to beware of false prophets and false teachers who “shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them.” And many will follow these hypocrites, who will “speak great swelling words of vanity” and will “promise them liberty” while they are “the servants of corruption” (II Peter 2:1-19).

And how does this second chapter tie into the first? These false “Christian” teachers will spew out false teachings that will hinder a young Christian’s spiritual growth. Peter gives his stark warning to us so that we would not be hijacked and taken away by the enemy, thus prohibiting us from making our calling and election sure. Bluntly put, false teachings will thwart the children of God from growing into fully matured Christians, fit to sit on the throne with Christ. Getting rid of these false concepts about God is where the study and prayer come in after true knowledge comes to us.

Isaiah wonders, “Who hath believed our report?” Who will answer the call to go all the way to the throne of God? Only the adventurous. Only the unafraid. Only the rebels who refuse to come under the yoke of the god of this world. Only those who trust in the Spirit of God within themselves, as He helps them separate the good teachings from the bad.

But man’s wisdom cannot teach this truth to the elect. Old Adamic man just cannot teach it to us, nor the well-meaning manna-gatherers of yesteryear, who fed the flock of God with the spiritual bread that they had one hundred, five hundred, or one thousand or more years ago. That cannot sustain the elect of God for these latter days. For these elect must have the “present truth”—food convenient for them.

God is doing a new thing; He is pouring out new light as to His plan and purpose. The Spirit is pouring out His truth today all over the earth. He has seven thousand unbowed to Baal, and they are like river bed conduits of His living water. Those who thirst will drink. The rest will with parched throats persist in scratching moisture out of broken cisterns of the waters of the past, repositories of the damp shadows of truth.

For God is doing a new thing in the earth, a thing that men will not believe though God Himself tells them. For He has already, even though He has blinded all but the remnant, the elect. But they will prepare and do and put on these additions to the “faith once delivered to the saints.”   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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Add to Knowledge Temperance–On Being Puffed Up

Someone on this earth will sit down on the throne of God alongside our Savior and will be a ruler in the government that the King will establish in all the earth.  In fact, a whole company of over comers have been “predestinated to be conformed to the image of His Son” (Rom. 8: 29).  Fully matured, they will stride this crippled earth after the Great Tribulation.  In God’s stead as His ambassadors of the literal Kingdom of Heaven will they rule with Him, for they will have His Spirit fully developed within them.  These are the “partakers of the divine nature” who will do the King’s business after the disasters that will smite the earth.

“No man takes this honour unto himself” (Heb. 5: 4).  It is God’s doing.  He has a plan and He is quite capable of helping them carry out His own plan.  And that plan and purpose is to share Himself with His creation.  He is Love, and all Love can do is love and share and give.

Those of us who have been called to this “high calling of God in Christ” have been left a textbook explaining how to receive immortality.  We now are in the process of studying it and taking it to heart.  We need this instruction in order to receive the proper training and education to be an effective ruler with Christ in the soon coming Kingdom of Heaven right here on earth.  That textbook is found in the “scriptures of truth,” the Holy Bible, which is God’s letter to us, a guidebook He showed to His prophets and apostles.  And He is now showing it to us who believe, who have faith.

Adding to our faith

The apostle Peter instructs those of us who have been called to “partake of the divine nature” (II Peter 1: 3-4).  He relates that God  promised us immortality, and it is by these promises, that we can get rid of our old sinful nature and receive His divine nature.   And God’s nature grows and matures in us to the point that in the end, it will be all Him.  The divine nature grows in us through receiving more true knowledge of Him and His plan.  And part of that is the additions to our faith.

“Add to knowledge temperance”

The apostle Paul wrote that “knowledge puffs up, but charity (agape love) edifies” (I Cor. 8: 1).  This puffing up is the sound of an inflated ego that has no place to go with the knowledge; there is no desire to flow the knowledge on out to others.  Agape love, conversely, flows out of its heart of love and shares and builds up fellow Christians, helping them in their walk with God.

The novice in Christ will get the bighead after gaining some of the true knowledge of God.  There is an innate tendency in the old nature of man and spiritual babes in Christ to have one’s pride inflated upon receiving this knowledge, which has “been kept secret from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 13: 35).

This knowledge flows out of the mind and heart of God and sheds light on the very mysteries of the acquisition of immortality.  This information is precious–so rare and fine a treasure, in fact, that “few there be that find it” (Matt. 7: 14).  A beautiful four lane highway is leading many to destruction.  “But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it” (v. 14 NLT).

Knowledge of these things will puff a person up.  Why?  Because they are still thinking that they are the object of God’s blessing and not the channel of it.

Therefore, knowledge of the holy things must have temperance added to it.  Self control must be added.  And the major lesson we must learn is that our little powerless self did not come up with this knowledge on its own.  It was not delivered to us for any great thing that we are or have done.  No.  It is pure grace flowing out of God’s heart to us.  It is all Him, favoring and having “mercy on whom He will have mercy” (Rom. 9: 15).  It is all Him.  It is our privilege to be a channel of this knowledge on out to His people.

Beware of False Teachers

Paul warns in another place about getting “puffed up” by knowledge.  He warns new Christians not to get entangled by men who teach a  “philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ (Col. 2: 8).

He is saying that men will deceive young Christians through all kinds of worldly earthly thoughts.  But Christ is all you need, which is knowledge about who He is and what He has done for His people.

“You are complete in Him” (v. 10).  You don’t need mumbo jumbo bells and whistles and gimmicks of worship, as it were.  “For in Him dwells all the fullness of the godhead bodily.”  And through His sacrifice of Himself, you have been circumcised spiritually.  His Spirit invisibly cuts out your old sinful Adamic nature, and He gives you a new heart.  “Buried with Him by baptism, wherein also you are risen with Him through the  faith of the operation of of God, who has raised Him from the dead (v. 11-12).

False teachers are “puffed up”

One who teaches false doctrines tries to “beguile you,” and is “vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind” (Col. 2: 18).  Remember that they “come to you in sheep’s clothing.”  They appear as “messengers of light.”  They have a little smidgeon of truth, and it has puffed them up as they imagine vain things about God and ways to worship Him.

How does a false teacher or preacher first go astray?  He gets all “puffed up by his fleshly mind.”  “Fleshly” here is from the Greek word sarx.  It is a mind controlled by the “flesh” (sarx).  This denotes the old nature, natural thinking man, unregenerate man.  He has an earthly mind.  “He that is of the earth is earthly, and speaks of the earth; he that comes from heaven is above all…for He whom God hath sent speaks the words of God” (John 3: 31, 34).

The phrase “of the earth” points to the same origins as Adam in the garden, made of the dust of the earth, clueless as to the heavenly destiny for mankind.  These false teachers are puffed up with a bit of God’s knowledge, yet remain Spirit-less when it comes to the truth of God.

So, yes, temperance must be added to knowledge.  This entails, of course, self-control in all areas of a Christian’s life.

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Add to Virtue Knowledge–The Additions to Your Faith

We have seen that some Christians are called to “go on unto perfection.”  These are the elect, the ones chosen by God to be “a kind of first fruits” of His glory.  They are the trailblazers into that spiritual country of immortality and will serve as princes and princesses in God’s soon coming kingdom that will subdue all of man’s governments and will fill the whole earth.

We have seen that these sons and daughters of God will not be content with “playing church,” but will forge ahead in study and prayer, searching for that hidden wisdom of God.  They are the ones who are searching for “a better [country], that is, an heavenly” one.  They are on a quest to enter into the heavenly New Jerusalem that will come down here to earth and will be the habitation of immortals, who are those who have spiritually matured.

They will understand that to fully partake of the “divine nature,” they will have to go beyond that initial flush of faith we Christians have all experienced.  These will see that the full spiritual maturity  calls for additions to their faith.  Just possessing in one’s heart a strong conviction that God is real and working in one’s life is not the nutrient that will foster the spiritual growth, which leads to the harvest called “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

And make no mistake, brethren, glorification is where the elect are heading.  It is in the mind of God; it is already done in His books.  We need to embrace this truth and make the necessary sacrifices that will bring about this maturity.

We have seen that in order to go on with Him on this path, we must add certain spiritual attributes to our faith.  Peter tells us to “add to your faith virtue,” which is that quality that helps us be proactive and not passive in this walk.  Virtue is that warlike energy that takes the fight to the enemy.  It gets us off the couch and into the fray.  It is the very strength and power of God’s Spirit [For more see these two articles   https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2012/12/02/add-to-your-faith-virtue-gods-strength-and-power-2-peter-1-5/   https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2012/11/27/the-additions-to-your-faith-prerequisites-of-receiving-immortality/ ].

Adding knowledge to virtue

The second addition to the faith is adding knowledge to virtue.  God does not want us running out there cutting and slashing with the “sword of the Spirit” at just any old thing that pops up.  Nor does He want us to be gullible and believe everything we hear about God.  We must have knowledge added to the zeal.

Many “little children” of God, energized with their new found faith, want to get out there and change the world.  So they rush out and tell everyone they meet about their experiences in God.  This universal reaction comes out of a heart that means well.  But like Paul says, “They have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge” (Rom. 10: 2).

There is a “knowledge” then that young Christians need to be in agreement with.  If we strike out on our new found Christian walk without this knowledge that the apostle refers to, then we will wander off onto a path that detours us away from the road to the celestial city.

Some detours

What are some of these detours?  They are imaginations; they are false teachings about the plan and purpose of God.  The apostles and prophets continuously warn us about not believing false teachers and preachers.

One detour takes an unsuspecting young Christian to “Neverland.”  It is the mythical concept that just accepting Christ grants us a ticket to heaven and not to the bad place.  They are promised by their teachers that they will go to heaven and stay in heaven forever with God.  That’s about it.  They are never told that Christ is coming back here to earth–what a stupendous event!  And He is bringing all the dead in Christ with Him.  They have never considered it.  And what about those who are alive when He touches down on the Mount of Olives?  What happens to His followers who are alive?  And what happens to the people who survive the Great Tribulation Period?  What happens to them here on earth?  All this never enters their minds.

Another detour that hinders Christian growth is the false promise of a rapture.  Total escapism.  Not going to happen.  But people rush out in their zeal and believe this because it sounds good and logical.  Yet, they never study it out and prove it one way or another to themselves.  It is tricky.  They have a zeal for God, “but not according to knowledge” [for more on this go here https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/?s=rapture ].

So what is this knowledge Peter’s talking about?

To answer that question, we must be prepared to dig deep into the scriptures of truth.  Knowledge is a noun translated from the Greek word gnosis (#1108) meaning “knowledge.”  We see it in the English words “diagnosis” and prognosis.”  The verb form of this word (#1107; #1097) means “to make known.”  So the noun means “that which is made known.”

But there is a lot of “knowledges” out there.  Which knowledge is he talking about?

So what has been made known?  What exactly is this knowledge that the apostles were so keen on?  First, God has “made known” to us through Christ’s resurrection the “ways of life,” as in the path we will take to arrive at a state of immortality or everlasting life.  Literally.  Not “crystal blue persuasion,” “floating around heaven all day.”  No.  God has given us the knowledge on how to obtain immortality.  That is how big this concept is.  There is a true way into His kingdom/government as His elect sons and daughters.  We can see this in the book of Acts where Peter is quoting David, “Thou hast made known to me the ways of life” (2: 28).

Christ’s resurrection, where His earthly body did not remain in the grave–this is our hope, that as He promised, we, too, can receive immortalityBut there is so much of this knowledge to learn.  True knowledge of how we will attain immortality does not come willy-nilly.  If our earthly jobs require a modicum of seriousness and sobriety to master and perform, how much more does our training to be His fellow rulers in His kingdom?

After all, Christ promises this to some: “To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also over came, and am set down with my Father in his throne” (Rev. 3: 21).  You mean some of us will literally sit on the throne with Christ?  Somebody will, and He said, Whosoever will may come.  Kings and queens sit on thrones.  But to be sitting on the one and only throne designed by and for immortals.  That’s getting out there.  Need more faith?  Maybe we need  these additions to the faith, to grow it, to feed it, to enlarge and strengthen it.

What else is God “making known” to us?  “That He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had afore prepared unto glory.”  Some human beings that He calls “the vessels of mercy” He has already prepared to receive “glory.”

Nothing more glorious than everlasting life.  The “glory that He has for us is immortality.  He is making known this knowledge of these true spiritual riches that some will be glorified with Him at the end of this age!  That is what He is making known right now (Rom. 9: 23).

He is making known the mystery of His will.  “That God would make known what is the riches of the gloryof this mystery…which is Christ in you, the hope of glory…even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations but now is made manifest to his saints (Col. 1: 27, 26).

This “glory” spoken of here is spelled out in Romans 8: 18-31.  It speaks of the adoption, where we mortals shall be redeemed by God through resurrection and receive a new spiritual body that cannot die like this earthly body that is physically corruptible.  God gave us a destiny unto this glorious state beforehand, that we would “be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren” (v. 29).  And if we are, indeed, one whom He has predestinated, then He has called us, justified us, and He has also glorified us (v. 30).  This “glorification” is all about receiving an immortal spiritual body.  [Read more in I Cor. 15  and here: https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/2011/11/27/the-high-calling-of-god/ ].

There is so much more that He has “made known” to His children.  We are told to add this knowledge of His plan and purpose to the virtue/zeal and on to the faith.  Adding knowledge then is all about first learning His true plan and promises and incorporating them into our thinking.  This takes true teachings, much study, and much communication with our Savior.   Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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The Additions to Your Faith–Prerequisites of Receiving Immortality

Just having faith in Christ is not enough.  Now, wait a minute.  Hear me out before you jump.

Some have said, “Faith in Christ is all you need.”  To get into the first level of a walk with God, that is true.  But things must be added to the true faith in order for us to fully manifest God’s divine nature in us, according to the apostle Peter.

He says that we must make certain spiritual additions to the faith, so that we can be “partakers of the divine nature…Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (agape love)” (II Peter 1: 5-7).

Peter goes on to say that if these additions “be in you and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren (idle) nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus (Yahshua) Christ” (v. 8).

In other words, without these additions, we will not grow up “unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ” (Eph. 4: 13).  Nor will we without these additions “be filled with all the fulness of Christ” (Eph. 3: 19).  Why?  Because the person without these additions listed above “is blind, and cannot see afar off, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins” (II Pet. 1: 9).  These additions, then, serve as a kind of eye salve that anoints our eyes that we may see the spiritual road ahead of us.

In fact, the way we “make our calling and election sure” is to add these very things to our faith! That is why this is so important to the overcomers of all things.  For if we add these things to our faith, we “shall never fall” (v. 10).  The addition to our faith of these things is the key that unlocks the door to the “entrance…into the everlasting kingdom” of our God (v. 11).

Who was Peter writing to?

Peter is writing not to everyone, but to those “that have obtained like precious faith with us” (1: 1).  He is writing to “those who have already received by divine allotment” this equally honored and precious “conviction that God exists and is the Creator and Ruler of all things, the Provider and Bestower of eternal salvation through Christ” {Thayer’s Lexicon}.

It is God who has placed this faith, this “conviction” that He is real, in our hearts.  It is not something we “muster up.”  It is all Him.  It is His grace to us, which is to say, God favors us with knowledge of Him and His plan and word.  This brings light to our eyes and strength to our hearts.  God gives grace to some during this end time era with spiritual knowledge of Him.  This is His grace to us.

Now He gives this grace in accordance to “His divine power” which gives to the recipients “all things that pertain to life and godliness through the knowledge of Him” (1: 3).  For He “has called us to glory and virtue.”

Glorification = Immortality

God has tapped us on the shoulder in some way  to bring us to the stage of spiritual growth called “glorification”!  Yes, this spiritual road we have begun to walk down is leading us into being glorified with Him!  This is sonship; this is rulership with Him in His kingdom.

We have to add these things listed by the apostle Peter, if we are to fulfill our calling to be His manifested sons and daughters, His ruling family that He has called us unto.  That’s how important they are to Him, first, and should, therefore, be important to us.  Important enough to seriously study them out.

But the big take away of this opening chapter of II Peter is this: This conviction that God is and is in control through Christ–this faith, this conviction must have other attributes added to it, in order for us to fulfill our calling as His sons and daughters, the princes and princesses, sitting with Him in His throne.

Peter knows full well what it takes to “make our calling and election sure.”  He knows that our initial experiences based on God’s favor and grace in showing a bit of Himself to us and thereby “calling us out of darkness into His marvelous light”–he knows that those early experiences and revelations will not take us across the finish line in this race “for the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil 3: 14).

And it is through this knowledge of the holy things of God that we are given “exceeding great and precious promises” (II Pet. 1: 4).  God has promised to give unto us His followers immortality, or eternal life.  Immortality is it.  It is the biggest gift, the greatest promise the Immortal One can give to a mortal.  There is nothing greater for one who will die than to be granted eternal life.

And this immortality that God has promised us is what the aforementioned “glorification” is all about.  And Peter says by the Spirit of God that we are called “to glory and virtue.”  And God promised this to us from time immemorial.  “In hope of eternal life, which God, which cannot lie, promised before the world began” (Titus 1: 2).

All of this notwithstanding, in order to receive this precious promise of immortality, we must add certain spiritual components to our faith, to our conviction that God is real and true.  These additions are the elements of the very nature of God Himself.

How do we do this?  First we must study them out and receive the knowledge of just what they are, and then, reckon them added by faith.

Two points are worthy encouragers for us on this road to immortality.  First, He said of us in His prayer in John 17: 22: “And the glory which You gave Me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one.”  In His mind, it is a done deal.  He is saying, I have already given them glorification, which is immortality.  With this, they are one with the Father and Son.  It is also good to know that “He has chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world.”  He has full confidence in His plan, which includes us.  But the first step is to add to our faith virtue.   What virtue is comes next time.          Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Understanding: To Depart from Evil

Step Five on the Road to Immortality: Repentance from Dead Works

“To depart from evil is understanding.” Job 28:28.   “Knowledge of the holy is understanding.” Proverbs 9:10

Chapter 26 of the book Yah Is Savior: The Road to Immortality

     So far we have taken some very necessary steps on the road to immortality.  We have discovered that Yahweh-Is-Savior is that Road to Everlasting Life.  We have learned how to be in awe of Him, which is the obtaining of wisdom.  We have learned His true name, His nature, and His eternal purpose and plan.

     But all these steps have amounted to the mere acquisition of knowledge—extremely important, of course, and necessary, but knowledge nonetheless.  In this next step, however, we must do and not just know.  We will learn to put this knowledge into practice.  We now start doing what we know to do.

     Talk is cheap; action is expensive.  “If you know these things, happy are you if you do them,” said the Master.  Conversely, if we gain knowledge of the holy things and do not begin to do them and walk in them, then we will not be happy. …The latter end is worse with them than the beginning.  For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. II Peter 2:21.

     Receiving knowledge of the high, sanctified, set-apart things of God is the gaining of understanding.  Now at first this does not make much sense to us because we have man’s definition of what understanding is, much like we had man’s definition of what wisdom was in step one.  When we think of the word “understanding,” we think of comprehending something—the ability of making sense of something. But this is man’s interpretation.  When we begin to attain knowledge of the holy things, the secret things, the things that the Supreme Being reserves only for those who fear Him and are awe of Him—that is understanding!  And this knowledge of the sanctified things, the things that the Almighty has set apart and reserved for only a few—that is understanding and that will bring us into the desire to flee the evil of our ways, to depart from the old life and get into the flow of His new life within us. …The knowledge of the holy is understanding. Proverbs 9:10…To depart from evil is understanding. Job 28:28.  Understanding is knowing about His true ways which leads us to depart from evil.

     True knowledge about the Most High’s sacred truths will lead us into doing something about it; it will lead us to fleeing the evil.  But how do we do really ever be rid of the sin in our lives?

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