FROM the CANDLESTICK to the THRONE, PART 157
THE BEAST OUT of the EARTH (continued)
BY: J. PRESTON EBY
KINGDOM BIBLE STUDIES
“Teaching the things concerning the kingdom of God…”
PART ONE HUNDRED FIFTY-SEVEN
Buying and Selling
Here is Wisdom
“And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads.” (Rev. 13:16)
A comparison of various scripture passages shows that the words “token,” “sign,” “seal,” “name,” and “mark” are used in the Bible as synonymous terms. Thus, “the SEAL of God in the forehead” (Rev. 7:3), “the Father’s NAME in the forehead” (Rev. 14:1), and “the MARK of the beast in the forehead” (Rev. 13:16) all indicate the same principle at work. In this case it is not some literal mark to be made in the flesh, but a state of being in mind and nature which serves as a “mark of distinction” between those who are GOD’S and those who are of the bestial religious system of man.
When God gave Moses instructions for the keeping of the Passover feast, He said, “And thou shalt show thy son in that day, saying, This is done because of that which the Lord did unto me when I came forth out of Egypt. And it shall be for a sign upon thine hand, and for a memorial between thine eyes, that the Lord’s law may be in thy mouth: for with a strong hand hath the Lord brought thee out of Egypt (the beastly world system).” (Ex. 13:9) The keeping of the Passover was like a sign on the hand and forehead, a mark, a reminder that the law — the ways and nature of the Lord — should always be upon their lips and in their hearts and lived out in the conduct of their daily lives.
The deep and hidden mysteries of God are never discovered by the investigations or probings of the natural mind because they pertain to a realm beyond the reach of the natural. Only by the spirit of wisdom and revelation from on high can we perceive the depth of meaning contained in the counsel of the Lord to Moses as He continued to instruct him respecting the observance of the Passover. “And it shall be when thy son asketh thee in time to come, saying, What is this? that thou shalt say unto him, By strength of hand the Lord brought us out from Egypt, from the house of bondage: and it came to pass, when Pharaoh would hardly let us go, that the Lord slew all the firstborn in the land of Egypt…and it shall be for a token upon thine hand, and for frontlets between thine eyes: for by strength of hand the Lord brought us forth out of Egypt.” (Ex. 13:14-16) Again, the mark upon the hand and the forehead; not a little plastic card, nor a brand or a tattoo upon their flesh, nor a computer chip under their skin, but a taking into their MIND of the law of the Lord and a binding upon their hand — the OUTER ACTIONS — bespeaking the fulfilling of His law in all their doings.
Who among us would not willingly have our hand cut off or our forehead stripped of skin if anything so obvious and simple as that separated us from the glory of God? Thus, in the book of Revelation two ways are revealed: the way of the SEAL OF GOD and the way of the MARK OF THE BEAST! And each finds its reality in two areas — on the one hand, the seal of God in the “forehead” signifies the mind of Christ, and the seal of God upon the “hand” signifies the godly and spiritual way of doing things, in all outward actions. On the other hand, the mark of the beast in the “forehead” signifies the carnal mind, the beastly way of thinking, and the mark of the beast upon the “right hand” signifies the fleshly way of doing things, in all outward actions, especially religious actions.
Except in the case of left-handed persons, the “right hand” is the one generally used. Certainly if one pays homage to the bestial religious system of man, he will lend a hand of assistance to that organization. He will promote its programs, cooperate in its activities, be faithful in attendance to its gatherings, and support it with his money. By doing this he receives the symbolic “mark” in his “right hand,” which is the hand of service. By this course of action he reveals what sort of religious personality he is, and betrays thereby that he is not committed to a pure walk in the Spirit of God nor to service in the spiritual kingdom of God. The underlying principle is that if you want the religious system to “do business” with you, you must “do business” with it! You must lend your best hand to its aid and maintenance, and make an open-face appearance, detectable in your personality, to show that you belong to it as your owner and master.
How well I remember sitting on the platform of a large Charismatic meeting many years ago. I had been attending a weekly luncheon with some of the pastors in the city, and we were cooperating with this meeting in the hope that through fellowship with these people we might be able to reach some of them with the word of reconciliation, sonship, and the kingdom. A well known minister from a large Charismatic church on the west coast was the guest speaker. After giving his testimony, he called those with needs to the platform for prayer. With great flourish he entered into his “word of knowledge” routine by which he revealed to various ones what their problems were. I had sensed, all through the ministry that night, something strange. Like a lightning bolt from the sky, the Spirit spoke from within myself, “This is not of me — this man is operating in a psychic gift, not by the mind of the Spirit of God!” Then followed this piercing inquiry, “What are YOU doing here?” At that moment I would have welcomed a trap door to open beneath me, permitting me to just quickly and silently disappear! At that rebuke from the Lord I learned a valuable lesson — we do not make people pure by mingling with their mixture! We do not overcome the beast, by sitting at his table, partaking with him!
Therefore, we desire the seal of God upon our lives rather than the mark of the carnal, beastly nature of religion! When one insists on living after the carnal guidance of the bestial system, he takes upon himself the mark of the beastly mind, which is spiritual death. If one then lives in his outward actions out of that carnal religious mind-set and not after the revelation and leadership of the Spirit, he takes upon himself the mark of the beast in his right hand. No man by carnal wisdom or soulical strength can do the works of God! But to be spiritually minded and strong in the power of HIS MIGHT reveals the glory of the Lord in the land of the living!
Oh, how beautiful is the mark of the Father’s name upon the forehead! And let me tell you something. Everyone who has that mark has overcome the other mark! John the beloved makes this plain when he says, “And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God.” (Rev. 15:2) Beyond any doubt this group standing upon the sea of glass is the same 144,000 that John previously saw standing with the Lamb upon mount Zion, for they, too, had the harps of God and had the Father’s name written in their foreheads!
Oh, how grotesque is the mark of the beast upon the lives of men! It has a thousand different expressions, but I was greatly impressed by reading a little article by Bob Robin in which he shared this observation and experience: “Most religions are eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in every service. A young girl was brought to the nurse in the compound where I was staying. After a night of suffering as the fetus was breached, and the nurse could not turn it, the next morning I preached the parents and the young husband a sermon. According to their religion, they thought it was a sin to ride in a car. I told them God wasn’t killing the girl; the devil wasn’t killing her, but their religion was. I had to use an interpreter because the family spoke only German. I finally got them into the car and took them to Durango to the hospital. They were extremely frightened, thinking that lightning or something terrible would happen to them because they were riding in a car. But, in a very few minutes after we arrived at the hospital, the baby was delivered and the mother lived. Religion would have killed her!
“Many are raised in a religion where it is a terrible sin to go to a movie. I was raised with that kind of thinking. I asked my parents to go with me to see ‘The Ten Commandments.’ My father replied, ‘Why son, we haven’t attended a movie since we have been saved.’ I told them that it was time they did. My folks reluctantly went with me. My father entered the theatre looking like he had just robbed the First National Bank. But, when we got inside the lights were still on, and dad saw many people from their church there. The picture changed his whole attitude.
“Many times I have seen sincere people crawling on their hands and knees to the Church of the Virgin of Guadalupe, blood flowing from their skinned knees. How terrible is that TREE OF RELIGION! Martin Luther was on the steps of Pilate (which had been imported from Jerusalem to Saint Peter’s in Rome). Going up the steps which had all kinds of sharp rocks on each step, on his knees, he heard, ‘Martin Luther, the just shall live by faith!’ He went back to Germany, and started the Reformation” — end quote.
BUYING AND SELLING
“And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.” (Rev. 13:17)
Our good friends of the “futurist” interpretation of Bible prophecy, with their fascinating and best-selling books, persist in their horror stories of days now supposed to be impending when for a very brief period of time (say three and a half years at most) the saints, who refuse to bear in their foreheads the number 666, will be prohibited from engaging in commercial transactions! Sensationalism is always preferred to true spiritual understanding. The fact that many godly men are already in prison, or are prohibited from preaching the gospel in many parts of the world, means nothing at all to writers who either cannot or will not be persuaded that the book of Revelation is a symbolical and SPIRITUAL BOOK, intended to be SPIRITUALLY UNDERSTOOD; and that buying and selling, in the prophetical and spiritual sense, has a much more significant meaning than that of supermarket shopping!
Buying and selling in the spiritual sense has naught to do with the business of commercial trade. The prophet Isaiah faithfully exhorted the Lord’s people, “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.” (Isa. 55:1) The prophet made it plain that he was not talking about worldly commerce or physical food, but about paying the price spiritually for the “milk” of God’s Word and the “wine” of His unspeakable joy and abounding Life. The wise man counseled: “Buy the truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding.” (Prov. 23:23) Literally speaking, we can neither buy nor sell the truth. Yet truth costs! While salvation is the gift of grace, attainment in the kingdom of God has a price tag attached to it. To “buy” the truth, or to “buy” wisdom, instruction, or understanding, means to pay the price to embrace and walk in the truth, and I have learned through many years of experience that the “price” of truth is oft times to simply be willing to “give up” or “sell” an error! Carnal nature must be “given up” or “sold,” exchanged for divine nature! I have also learned that, on another level, the “tuition” in God’s school of experience where one learns wisdom, instruction, and understanding, is sometimes very expensive! To the church at Laodicea, which prided herself that she was rich and increased with goods and had need of nothing, but knew not that she was wretched, poor, blind, and naked, the Lord admonished, “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich.” (Rev. 3:18)
“Buy of me gold” means to pay the price for the divine nature of our Father to be brought forth in our lives! “Tried in the fire” means that His nature has become an experiential reality within us through the processings of God. It speaks of an intimate, direct encounter with God that causes all that is contrary to His nature to be consumed by the all-consuming fire of His Spirit, resulting in our transformation into the likeness of Christ. Our Lord has called upon His elect, the overcoming sons of God, to buy of Him this gold tried in the fire, that we may be rich! Now there’s a “prosperity message” worth preaching! Now we know what the true riches are! The riches of which He speaks are not the riches of the world, either of money, material things, or of stature, position, fame, or self-glory. All those things are mere tinsel that the baby Christians seek after, the earth dwellers, who mind earthly things, and who worship the beast and his image! The riches of this world corrupt the spiritual man and prevent a manifestation of the true Life of God. The gold that we are to buy of Him represents a life that has been tried and tested, even as gold is refined, to bring forth the qualities of the Christ-life within all who are His called and chosen ones. The gold of which our Lord speaks is symbolic of the divine nature and the divine life of those who put on the Lord Jesus Christ. The gold of the realm of the spirit represents the spiritual riches of the saints, for Christ said that we should buy this gold tried in the fire, “that thou mayest be rich.” Therefore gold represents our true wealth! Jesus pointed out to the multitude gathered at His teaching, “A man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things that he possesseth.” (Lk. 12:15) Oh, how men seek after things! The man, however who lives and walks in the attributes of God is a rich man indeed! And he has paid a price to obtain his true wealth!
There is a pattern in the book of Revelation that shows that the first use of a word establishes the use and meaning of that word throughout the book. In this case, the first use of the word “buy” is with a spiritual application. To “buy and sell” means, naturally, to engage in the ordinary pursuits of life, and to exchange one item of value for another. If the purpose of the whole vision in the thirteenth chapter of the Revelation is spiritual, then applying this as a symbol on the spiritual plane reveals that those without the distinctive mark of the bestial system have no more recognized standing in the carnal church systems than men who are not allowed to buy or sell have in a community. If one in a particular business has his license revoked, he then has no authority to buy or sell in that industry. In like manner, if the church systems of man do not put their “stamp of approval” upon your life and ministry, you have no authority or standing to “deal” in spiritual things within their precincts! Thus, “selling” as a symbol, spiritually indicates the dealing out of truth, the ministering of the things of the Spirit of God, while “buying” typifies the acceptance of truth, the receiving of the things of God, regardless of the personal cost!
And is it not true that a man of God walking in the Spirit of the Lord and in the blazing light of heaven’s revelation, independent of all the man-made organizations, creeds, methods, and programs of religious Babylon, WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO LABOR AMONG THE CHURCH SYSTEMS, after the truth for which he stands becomes known, or until he should take their mark upon him by joining himself to them? And if he holds meetings in the community, the members of the churches are often warned by their leaders against “buying” — receiving — from this ministry because of his not having the mark or name of the beast. Their ministers are specially marked, for they come trained out of their theological seminaries with the stamp of their respective doctrine and traditions upon them and a license from the sect to engage in its ministry; and those not thus marked or designated HAVE NO PLACE AMONG THEM! Even if there is not much difference in their beliefs and practices, still, a Methodist minister cannot pastor a Baptist Church, nor can an Anglican priest say mass at the Roman Catholic Church! You must bear their mark! Whether a man is a man of God with a heaven-sent message matters nothing at all — you must bear the mark! Some of the Lord’s people bring a few of the old concepts and ways over into this kingdom walk, keeping just enough of it alive so that it enables them to still buy and sell with the folks in the religious systems. Then some of us are just radical enough to make a clean sweep of it all! This also reveals the manner in which the beast causes those who will not worship the image to be killed — an analogous killing; namely, an ecclesiastical cutting off, an excommunication or a repudiation — the absolute refusal to either “buy” or “sell” the things of God with you unless you take upon you THEIR MARK!
Elaine Cook related in one of her writings how John Bunyon, author of Pilgrim’s Progress, was jailed for many years for refusing to obtain a “license” to preach. He refused to take the mark or pay homage to the image of the beastly systems of man, so he was forbidden to deal out the truth and people were kept from obtaining it from him!
How many of my readers would be permitted to “take communion” in most of the churches in your city on Sunday morning? How many could teach a Sunday School class in one of those churches? Ah, matters not whether you are a saint of God, filled with His Spirit, and bearing His Word — you cannot “buy or sell” with them unless you take the mark and pay homage to the image! You see, dear ones, there is not the slightest possibility that I will be invited to say mass at Saint Benedict’s Catholic Church next Sunday. There is absolutely no chance that I will be called to be the “pastor” at First Methodist Church, First Baptist Church, or the Assemblies of God! I do not stay awake nights wondering what I will share next week at the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses. You see, I don’t bear their mark, neither will I worship their image! And no man can “buy or sell” the spiritual things of God within those man-made institutions save he that has the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. That is the mystery.
The facts just stated are well illustrated by the following circumstances which I borrow from another brother. A number of years ago a precious brother in the ministry went into a certain town to find a place to conduct a series of meetings. He was directed by a Presbyterian lady to their pastor, who, she said, sometimes rented their church facilities for various functions. When he called on the minister and made known his errand, the first question asked him was this, “Are you a member of the Presbyterian Church?” The brother answered in the negative. He did not have the name of the beast. The next question that greeted him was this, “Do you believe the Westminster Confession of Faith to be orthodox?” He answered, “No, sir.” He did not have the mark of the beast. The last question asked was, “Do you belong to any of the various orthodox Protestant denominations?” The brother said, “No.” He did not have the number of his name. The answer was, “You cannot use our building.” You can neither buy nor sell!
Furthermore, organized religion, both Catholic and Protestant, is big business! The Charismatic movement is big business, too! Religion, in fact, is the biggest business in the world today! You and I, if we refuse to subscribe to its mockery, are excluded from carrying on the Father’s business with it. All who refuse to subscribe to the traditions, dogmas, and defilements of the religious systems are ostracized, accused of being heretics, and anathematized in as true a sense as were the martyrs of past ages who refused to bow down to the bestial system of this world!
I have been encouraged and emboldened through many years by the writings of Brother Ray Prinzing. In connection with our present subject he wrote, “We would not in any way try to fit another into those dealings which God has with us. But just by the way of example and illustration: When God dealt with us concerning the leaving of religious organized systems, He also made it clear to our own heart that we were never to become involved in a personal kingdom-building program which would involve our being organized as a ‘tax deductible non-profit organization’ so as to appeal to the finances of others for our support. This has been our position over these past years, and while God has led us to send out a lot of literature, it is with our trust in Him alone to provide. True, were we duly organized as non-profit there would be tax benefits for contributors — but it would mean bowing to the system as recognized by the world. By no means do we infer any condemnation for those so organized, for we are in a transition time, and many have been set up for years in a government recognized deductible status, which God has so used. But, as we said, God dealt with us, and ‘if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor’ (Gal. 2:18)”
HERE IS WISDOM…
“Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is six hundred three score and six.” (Rev. 13:18)
Here is wisdom: Let him that hath understanding count. The wise king Solomon said, “Wisdom is the principal thing,” but, in the same verse he hastily added, “and with all thy getting get understanding.” (Prov. 4:7) Paul prayed for the saints in Ephesus, “That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ…may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation…the eyes of your understanding being enlightened.” (Eph. 1:17-18) This beautiful prayer of the apostle demonstrates vividly the truth that wisdom is a state of being. We could say it has a “passive” quality — this wisdom comes only from the inworkings of God! Understanding and revelation are spiritual synonyms. Understanding has an “active” quality. The person who has understanding in our text above does something — he COUNTS! The mystery yields only to the understanding, that is spiritual understanding, for Paul prays that our understanding be enlightened by the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, and thus the enlightened understanding equals divine revelation! HERE IS WISDOM: Let him that hath revelation count the number of the beast. It should be evident to all who read these lines that this, too, is wisdom: Let not him who has no revelation attempt to count (decipher the meaning of) the number of the beast! What a word that is!
The key is this beautiful expression: “Here is wisdom.” If it’s wisdom we’re talking about, then it’s not philosophy, it’s not intellect, it’s not seminary training, it’s not mathematics. Notice that our text does not say, “Here is a riddle; let him that is bright solve it,” but plainly states: “Here is wisdom.” Therefore we must have something different! Though one might study and search forever, plying endlessly through mountains of musty volumes, trying to figure out the enigma of this number, he would never come to the correct conclusion, for the carnal man sees through carnal eyes, and having eyes, he sees not, neither does he understand. There is therefore only one word of advice that I can give. Do not try to figure out by much study the marvelous mysteries of God’s word, but CONCENTRATE ON CHRIST. Christ Himself is the truth and beside Him there is no truth. Christ is also the wisdom of God and the apostle tells us that HE is made unto us wisdom. Oh, yes! Wisdom is a Person, and wisdom is a state of being. It is the state of being of the Christ-man. Our knowledge of God and our understanding of the things of God depend entirely upon where we look. Paul penned these significant words to the saints in Colosse, “IN HIM are HID all the treasures of WISDOM and KNOWLEDGE.” (Col. 2:3) If you are looking anywhere else beside Christ Himself to understand the mysteries, you are surely looking in the wrong place. Christ Himself is the great treasure house where all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are concealed and garnered up. In Him, and in Him alone, are to be found all the rich blessings which wisdom and knowledge bestow!
The more intimate and vital your relationship with Him, my beloved, the more the truth of the deep things of God will unfold within your heart. But like a choir of bewildered voices, ascending in pitiful petition to God, so those who try to understand the mysteries of God with human reasoning come to cry at last, “Lord, how can we know the truth? Which among this confusion of voices can we believe? Which among this conglomeration of interpretations is right?” There is, thank God! one answer and one only. It is the answer given by Jesus centuries ago. “I AM…the truth!” Seek not the truth from the learnings of men. Seek Christ, for He is the truth! If the Christ Himself does not bear witness within you of the things written even in this message, then lay it aside, put it on the shelf, or file it in file thirteen. As you live in blessed communion with HIM, there will come that inward sense of knowing; the words of life and light that then cross your path from God’s anointed prophets and teachers will strike a responsive chord in the deepest recesses of your spirit, bursting forth with the harmonious melody of understanding! Here is wisdom: Let him that hath understanding, let him that hath revelation — COUNT! It is clear; the mystery has a spiritual meaning. If we have spiritual understanding, we will be able to count (discern the meaning of) the number of the beast. Let us trust the Holy Spirit to make it real to our hearts!
Understanding is an ability and faculty of the mind. Without mind there can be no understanding. A man’s understanding corresponds precisely to the condition, development, or quality of his mind. Every created life form possesses mind, and the understanding of the creature is limited by the quality of its mind. Quality of mind is, basically, an inherited characteristic. For instance, a cat thinks like a cat, knows as a cat, understands as a cat, and acts like a cat because it was born a cat — therefore possessing the brain and mind of a cat. We have a cat in our home. I have noticed that this cat will come and sit in the bedroom while I watch the evening news on the television. While I am very interested in the news, the cat has positively no interest at all! She couldn’t care less! Oh, yes, she often sits on the corner of the bed and stares straight into the television screen. It is not that she doesn’t see the pictures flashing across the screen. She sees them, alright, but she doesn’t understand them — so eventually she curls up on the bed and goes to sleep! It is simply impossible for cats to understand things human. Humans are of a different and higher order than are cats. Cats may see men, and may observe their movements, yet there is no common ground of knowledge. The cat has no comprehension of what it sees. It discerns only things pertaining to its own realm. It has positively no understanding of the ways of man, or of the meaning of his movements, or words, or habits. Cat minds function on the level of cat nature, while human minds function of the level of human nature.
Likewise, God is of a different and higher order of life and nature than are humans. The mind of man functions on the level of human nature, whereas the mind of God functions on the level of divine nature. There is no common ground of knowledge or understanding between the two. Therefore, the natural man is totally incapable of comprehending that which pertains to the realm of God! For natural minds to comprehend things spiritual is equally as impossible as for cats to comprehend things human. And so, until humans receive of God’s Spirit — the Spirit that knows and understands the things that pertain to God — it is impossible for them to have any understanding, either of God, or of His word, or of His ways. With what truth did Paul write to the Corinthians: “For who could really understand a man’s inmost thoughts except the spirit of man himself? How much less could anyone understand the thoughts of God except the very Spirit of God? We have now received not the spirit of the world but the Spirit of God Himself, so that we can understand something of God’s generosity towards us.” (I Cor. 2:11-12, Moffatt Translation) And then after men receive from God, the depth of their knowledge and understanding on the divine plane is wholly in proportion to the measure of the indwelling Spirit!
All understanding is in the mind, therefore, the understanding of God is in the mind of God, which is also the mind of the Spirit, the mind of Christ, and the mind of the new creation Man! We do not understand the spiritual realities of God with our natural minds. It is not the same mind that understands how to drive your car that also understands the mysteries of the kingdom of God. Not at all! It is the new mind, the mind of Christ within, that understands things spiritual! When the Lord Jesus received the seven spirits of God He received the Spirit of Understanding (Isa. 11:2-3). This was not the same understanding of the same mind by which He built furniture in Joseph’s carpenter shop! Oh, no! This Spirit of Understanding is one aspect of the fullness of THE MIND OF GOD — to understand the true nature of all things as God understands!
It has always, from the very beginning, been the serpent-dragon’s policy to misrepresent the truth, to distort and carnalize the word of God, in order to hinder mankind from beholding the great beauty and majesty of the eternal purposes of God. The more absurdities the dragon-spirit can get interwoven into man’s doctrines and concepts respecting God, the church, the divine plan and purpose, eternity, the destiny of man, etc., the better he will succeed in alienating men from Truth and Reality. Thus for centuries the great adversary has been working most successfully and has covered and hidden some of the most precious and wonderful truths under the most specious and repulsive errors, and the progress of the Lord’s people has been correspondingly slow. But, thank God! we are now living in the time when the veil of ignorance is being dissolved, and when the Lord’s people are being drawn by the Spirit to look away from the creeds, traditions, superstitions, and systems formed for their enslavement during ages past, and to look away to CHRIST HIMSELF WHO IS THE TRUTH AND THE WISDOM OF GOD! Therefore lean no longer upon thine own understanding! Judge neither by the sight of the eyes, the hearing of the ears, or the reasoning of the mind, but seek that living SPIRIT OF UNDERSTANDING that comes from God alone!
This Spirit of Understanding is one of the seven spirits of sonship that shall rest like a cloud upon the manifest sons of God. “And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord; and shall make him of quick understanding…with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod (spirit) of his mouth, and with the breath (spirit) of his lips shall he slay the wicked. And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins…the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.” (Isa. 11:2-9) By these shall the glory and order of God’s kingdom be established throughout the whole earth! Any man who reigns in that glorious kingdom must, first, be a partaker of the reality of these seven spirits! Let us pray for the Spirit of Understanding!
May that deep and fervent cry expressed from the heart of the Psalmist become even the cry of God’s called and chosen elect in this great hour: “Thy hands have made me and fashioned me: give me understanding that I may learn Thy commandments.” (Ps. 119:73) How readily did the Lord incline His ear unto the Psalmist’s earnest petition, and with what speed did He send forth the answer, for in verses 102-104 we read: “I have not departed from Thy judgments: for Thou hast taught me. How sweet are Thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth! Through Thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.”
Now we know the deep meaning of the words: “Here is wisdom: Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast!”
Even so, let it be unto us, our Father!
To be continued…
FROM CANDLESTICK…, Pt. 157 [J. Preston Eby] ~ BIBLE STUDY 1