"I went to Jerusalem to become acquainted (Gk. istoria) with Cephas" - Paul's words from Galatians 1:18.

Fire and Fury and this Earth as an Inheritance


"The meek will inherit the earth." (Matthew 5:5)

"The righteous will never be removed, but the wicked will not inhabit the earth." (Proverbs 10:30)

Let Korea and all present and future world empires, including America, take notice. Nations, kings, dictators and Presidents may flaunt their alleged powers to destroy the earth, and seek to intimidate God’s people as they choose, but it is only for a season (2:1-23; 14:1-12; 27:1-2, 11-37; cf. Psalm 36).

Those who follow Jesus' teachings will ultimately "inherit the earth” (Matthew 5:5).

The Prince of Peace told us to go and “make disciples of all the nations” (28:19) until He returns. When Christ begins to reign in the heart of a person, the "Prince of Peace" is King over that person. (Matthew 3:2; 4:17; 10:7). However, there is coming a day when Christ will physically reign from the earth as King of Kings, living among His people forever.

The Bible teaches the righteous will live forever with earth as our eternal home.

God said to Abram,
"Lift up your eyes from where you are and look north and south, east and west. All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever." (Genesis 13:14-15).
Abraham, of course, is "the father of us all," that is "those of us who have the faith of Abraham" (Romans 4:16). Abraham "believed God" and it was credited to him as righteousness. God's righteousness, the only kind of righteousness that counts, is received through faith. And those with this faith in Him will live forever on the earth.

Moses knew the earth would be God's peoples' possession forever. He prayed:
"Remember your servants Abraham, Isaac and Israel, to whom you swore by your own self: 'I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and I will give your descendants all this land I promised them, and it will be their inheritance forever.'" (Exodus 32:13).
God reiterated His promise throughout the prophetical writings that He would give His people land forever. God declared through the prophet Ezekiel:
 "I will gather them from all around and bring them back into their own land. I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel. There will be one king over all of them .... They will be my people, and I will be their God. My servant David (the Messiah) will be king over them, and they will all have one Shepherd. They will live in the land I gave to my servant Jacob, the land where your fathers lived. They and their children and their children's children will live there forever, and David my servant will be their Prince forever. I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant. I the Lord make Israel holy, when my sanctuary is among them forever.'" (Ezekiel 37:21-28). 
Ezekiel plainly teaches the righteous will inherit this land forever.

When Jesus raises the dead to judge and sentence the wicked to the second death and gives to the righteous immortal life, He will usher in this everlasting age where "the meek inherit the earth." Paul describes this event:
"We tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words." (I Thessalonians 4:15-18). 
Notice, Paul teaches the home of the eternal home of the righteous is on the earth, with the curse of sin and death fully reversed. It is on this earth that we will be "with the Lord" forever, for He will make His habitation among us.
"Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away" (Revelation 21:1-4). 
Christ will be dwelling with us on earth. We will be on earth with Him. God's purpose at the general resurrection and judgment is to sentence the resurrected wicked from all the ages to "the second death" and to gift the resurrected righteous with "immortal life."

This last judgment is described by Christ Himself.
"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; And they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left. "Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come" (Matthew 24:36-42). 
The Gentile gospel writer, Dr. Luke, describes the final judgment of the wicked similar to Matthew.
"I tell you, on that night two people will be in one bed; one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding grain together; one will be taken and the other left" (Luke 17:34). 
The Gospel writers assume that we know what happened in the days of Noah. So, do you know what happened in the days of Noah when God judged the world for sin?
God then said to Noah, "Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation....Seven days from now I will send rain on the earth for forty days and forty nights, and I will wipe from the face of the earth every living creature I have made." (Genesis 7:1-4). 
Noah and his family "in the ark" were delivered to a "new land," and the wicked were destroyed. No one was physically removed from the earth. The earth was transformed and made new. Only the righteous (those in the ark) inherited the new earth.

So it will be in the days of the coming of the Son of Man.

The final judgment of the wicked is also compared to the days of Sodom and Gomorrah.
And God said, "The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous... Then Abraham approached Christ and said: "Will you sweep away the righteous with the wicked? What if there are fifty righteous people in the city? Will you really sweep it away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous people in it? Far be it from you to do such a thing--to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Far be it from you! Will not the Judge of all the earth do right?" (Genesis 18:20-25).
Luke compares the coming of Christ in final judgment of the wicked and the gifting of eternal life to the righteous to what happened in the days of Sodom (e.g. "the days of Lot").  
 "It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all. "It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed." (Luke 17:28-30). 
Again the pattern of God's judgment throughout the Bible is consistent; the wicked are killed and the righteous stay on earth.

When Jesus describes His coming in final judgment in Matthew 24:36-42 (through v. 35 it is the judgment of Jerusalem), Jesus is only repeated what the Law (e.g. the Old Testament) has consistently taught about God destroying the wicked and rewarding the righteous with land.
"For the upright will live in the land, and the blameless will remain in it; But the wicked will be cut off from the land, and the unfaithful will be torn from it." (Proverbs 2:21-22). 
"Have no fear of sudden disaster or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked, For God will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being snared." (Proverbs 3:25-26). 
"The righteous will never be uprooted, but the wicked will not remain in the land." (Proverbs 10:30)
"For evil men will be cut off, but those who hope in God will inherit the land." (Psalm 37:9). 
"A little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look for them, they will not be found." (Psalm 37:10). 
"Those God blesses will inherit the land, but those he curses will be cut off." (Psalm 37:22). 
"For God loves the just and will not forsake his faithful ones. They will be protected forever, but the offspring of the wicked will be cut off" (Psalm 37:28). 
"The righteous will inherit the land and dwell in it forever." (Psalm 37:29). 
"When the storm has swept by, the wicked are gone, but the righteous stand firm forever." (Proverbs 10:25). 
Jesus, steeped in the teachings of the Law, and One who came "to fulfill the Law," taught consistently with the Hebrew Scriptures. The wicked will be destroyed and the righteous will be gathered into His Kingdom forever - a Kingdom that is on earth.
"The highest heavens belong to God, but the earth he has given to man." (Psalm 115:16). 
You might need to adjust your view of "heaven." Heaven is nothing more, nothing less, than the righteous being "raised from the death" and inheriting "the earth" forever. God's people will live on this "new earth" with the "curse fully reversed," for the wicked will be destroyed and as the prophet Malachi said, "The righteous will walk on the ashes of the wicked" (Malachi 4:3).

The Bible teaches that Christ will dwell with His people on earth forever.
"And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God." (Revelation 21:3). 
"The days are coming," declares God, "when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land." (Jeremiah 21:5). 
"You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth." (Revelation 5:10). 
"The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: "The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Son, and he will reign for ever and ever." (Revelation 11;15). 
"The righteous shall inherit the earth, and dwell therein for ever." (Psalm 37:29). 
The Old Testament Scriptures, the apostles, and Jesus Christ all taught that the righteous have their eternal dwelling on earth. We never see disembodied spirits floating in some mystical heaven as something taught in the Bible. The prophets of Scripture all taught the resurrection of the dead, a final judgment where the wicked are sentenced to death, and the righteous are gifted with immortal life and given the title deed to the earth.

No matter what Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, or Kim Jong-Un have in mind in terms of "the destruction of the earth," the King of Kings has given His Word that the earth will be preserved for His people at His coming.

So, next time you are tempted to litter, remember,that you would be soiling your eternal home. A proper understanding of one's future home gives a good corrective to one's present conduct. 

15 comments:

RRR said...

Hot dog, Wade! I love to discuss these things and am so glad you introduce them again, although in a somewhat different context than in previous times.

You are so right in our not needing to be intimidated or over impressed by the kings on this planet. I think I am intended to look at things going on kind of like a war correspondent doing coverage in a war zone in another land. It's really not my war, in terms of all the political enemies and their saber rattling. I do need to minister to the victims of war, and I am loyal to my country, pray for it, and will serve it anytime, but I need to remember that my "home" is not here.

But the things in your post I find most provocative are those referring to things that are coming, like; "You might need to adjust your view of "heaven." Heaven is nothing more, nothing less, than the righteous being "raised from the dead" and inheriting "the earth" forever." We had discussions on "heaven" in another recent post so I won't go there, but it is exciting to consider the prospects.

You and I have some different takes on guessing how things are going to play out in terms of God's plan and the ultimate outcome of this planet, I think. At the same time, like so many of those things that God apparently intends to remain somewhat cloaked in mystery, I don't consider myself to be dogmatic about it and believe I will only know for certain after it all unfolds. Of course, the key is for me to be obedient in striving to lead as many as possible into God's eternal security before the door closes and to keep my eyes on Jesus.

Thanks a lot for an exciting, encouraging message that we sure need to hear. I am so glad God chose to put me in this world at this time. What opportunities!

Christiane said...

http://www.framedart.com/product-images/AAABQAQA-P157471.jpg

I've always loved Edward Hick's painting of 'The Peaceable Kingdom' and I am ever deeply moved by the eleventh Chapter in Book of the Prophet Isaiah that tells of its coming:

"6 The wolf shall live with the lamb,
the leopard shall lie down with the kid,
the calf and the lion and the fatling together,
and a little child shall lead them.
7 The cow and the bear shall graze,
their young shall lie down together;
and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.
8 The nursing child shall play over the hole of the asp,
and the weaned child shall put its hand on the adder’s den.
9 They will not hurt or destroy
on all my holy mountain;
for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord
as the waters cover the sea. "


In the great kindness of Our God, we are given revelation of the Kingdom of God in a way that helps us and does not frighten or overwhelm us. Our Lord comes back from the crucifixion and the grave and repeatedly says 'peace be with you'.
Even after the Ascension, we were blessed with the 'Comforter' to help us.

So, if this understanding of this Earth as our eternal 'home' is measured up against the great kindness of God in helping us to make that connection with the 'eternal', then it makes sense to me. All shall be well in the Kingdom of Our Lord. :)

Wade Burleson said...

RRR,

Thank you, sir!

Wade Burleson said...

Christiane,

"All shall be well in the Kingdom of God."

No nine words say it better!

Rex Ray said...

Wade,

Here we go again. :)

The discussion if everyone remains in their graves until the end of time or:

“Yes, we are fully confident, and we would rather be away from these earthly bodies, for then WE WILL BE AT HOME WITH THE LORD.” (2 Corinthians 5:8 NLT)

“Jesus replied, “Your mistake is you [ Wade? :) ] don’t know the Scriptures…as to whether the dead will be raised…Long after Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob had died, God said to Moses. “I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” So he is the God of the living not the dead. You have made a serious error.” (Mark 12:24-27 NLT) Also read (Luke 20:37-38)

Anonymous said...

"So, next time you are tempted to litter, remember,that you would be soiling your eternal home. A proper understanding of one's future home gives a good corrective to one's present conduct. "

Hmmm. I always thought more trash would equal better combustion and a hotter refining fire for the new earth's genesis. You mean I should change my thinking? Ken

Rex Ray said...

Ken,

I think Wade is like all of us in that we like responding to people that agree with us, and we like to quote Scripture that backs up what we believe. For example Wade ignores verses that indicate that Heaven is existing NOW.

1. “There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. [Footnote: “There are many rooms in my Father’s house.” (John 14:2 NLT) Just before my uncle’s 5-year-old daughter died in China, she said, “Mama, which one is our house?”

2. “…Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom. Today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:42-43 NLT)

3. “Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, gazed steadily into HEAVEN and saw the glory of God, and he saw Jesus standing in the place of honor at God’s right hand!” (Acts 7:55 NLT)

4. “…I tell you the truth, you will all see HEAVEN open and the angels of God going up and down on the Son of Man, the one who is the stairway between HEAVEN and earth.” (John 1:51 NLT)

Ken, I’ll bet Wade won’t explain if earth is Heaven, how Jesus said he is the “stairway between Heaven and earth.”

Wade Burleson said...

Rex,

When Jesus calls Himself a "Stairway," or a "Shepherd," or "The Water of Life" or "the Bread of Life," He is using metaphorical language. Jesus is not a "literal" stairway, nor is He literally water, or bread, or a shepherd. But Jesus accomplishes all things that water accomplishes, bread accomplishes, a shepherd accomplishes and a stairway accomplishes.

In other words, if you wish to live in heaven for eternity, you must take the stairway that leads there, drink the water and eat the bread that gives you immortal life, and be in the care of the shepherd who ensures His flock gets to the safety of their eternal home.

Blessings, Rex

Anonymous said...

Rex, My tongue was in my cheek when I wrote my comment above. Sorry, I should have put a smiley face at the end.

Heaven is wherever the presence of Jesus is. Guess OK has a little heaven in it with much more to come. :) Ken

RRR said...

Rex Ray,
I know we have discussed these topics before and I said previously that I would not comment on it given we had already had a pretty good stream of conversation about it, but I can't help myself! I LOVE talking about these things and hearing from you, Wade and others, as to your thoughts. I don't propose that I am the authority who "knows", given that God obviously has cloaked much of these prophetic Kingdom plans until He reveals them in time, but I love searching Scripture and seeking to come to a conclusion to which I can be most confident. I think it is good because there are a lot of weird proposals out there and I know I must be guarded and at least strive to determine the position I feel is most in harmony with God's Word.

All that Wade says in response to your post above is truly correct in the "Stairway/Water/Bread" being metaphorical. I am sure you agree that it is too. However, I also believe we can dangerously dilute Scripture some times by attributing things as being allegorical, metaphorical, etc., too. Like my Old Testament professor who taught that "Adam and Eve" and the entire Creation/Fall from Grace account was allegorical and not meant to be a literal account. He explained away most miracles and divine encounters with this physical realm in much the same way. Wade certainly does NOT do that, but still, I lean toward taking Scripture literally unless it is very obviously not intended to be that way.

That said, I conclude from my investigation into Scripture (at least thus far) that:
- Jesus was alive and busy between His death and resurrection. (1 Peter 3)
-The story of the poor man/Lazarus gives insight into there being an active, spiritual realm simultaneous with the continued life in the physical world.
-The promise to the thief on the cross to be in "paradise" that day,
-the many insinuations in the Pauline writings regarding the immediate awakening in heaven's glory upon death,
-the number of references in the Book of Revelation as to the presence of saints in God's glory in heaven while people continue to live in the physical world, etc., etc., etc.,
- those who are not cloaked in the saving blood of Jesus Christ when they leave this physical world are going to spend eternity separated from God with no hope of rescue.

all together convince me that when I die, I will immediately be in God's glorious heavenly realm, mingling with Abraham, Elijah, Moses, Mom, Dad, Rex Ray's wife and that at no time will I be in any unconscious "sleep" state where I am mentally and spiritually separated from my Father.

I also take the position that following a millennium reign of Christ on this earth, God will completely dissolve this planet and we will immediately be in His new realm where there is no separation of physical from spiritual.

I KNOW that there are Scripture passages that can be used as a basis for positions contrary to what I have concluded and I respectfully submit that those proposals may prove to be more accurate as things unfold than what I have concluded. But for me, this is where I land.

Thank you all for allowing me to expunge on this again. I feel better now!

Rex Ray said...

RRR,

Yes, the five points you made that convince you that when you die you “will immediately be in God’s glorious heavenly realm…” is RIGHT ON!

Wade,

You’ve probably heard it said “not to fear those who argue, but be careful of those who ‘dodge’.

“Dodging” means a person (like many politicians) so many times does not answer the question but talks all around it.

I quoted John 1:51: “…I tell you the truth, you will all see HEAVEN open and the angels of God going up and down on the Son of Man, the one who is the stairway between HEAVEN and earth.”

That’s what you did when you said, “When Jesus calls Himself a "Stairway," or a "Shepherd," or "The Water of Life" or "the Bread of Life," He is using metaphorical language. Jesus is not a "literal" stairway,..”

HEY Old friend! The main fact Jesus said is: “heaven and earth” which you ignored or dodged.

By saying heaven and earth, Jesus emphasis there are TWO PLACES and not just one place as you claim earth will be heaven.

Wade Burleson said...

Rex,

Heaven and earth unite (Revelation 20) - so heaven and earth become one on that day.

"The meek will inherit the earth."

Verily I say to you today, 'You will be with me in Paradise." (No commas in the Greek language).

I'm not asking you to agree, and I completely understand your position. I also am not seeking to convince you by saying "You're wrong." Not at all. I could be wrong.

What I'm giving is the traditional, orthodox Christian view that God will redeem the earth and restore this place as the Paradise the first man lost. The Last Adam (Jesus Christ) reverses the curse of the first Adam.

In our church, we encourage people to relax when they hear opposing views and consider them respectfully, knowing that man's interpretations are fallible (capable of error), as I know mine can be - and so can your's.

Rex Ray said...

Wade,

You said, “God will redeem the earth and restore this place as the Paradise the first man lost.”

Are you saying that Heaven will be no better than when Adam and Eve existed?

That doesn’t portray with “…No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God HAS prepared for those who love him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9) (“HAS” is past tense.)

Your idea would have the “ladder between heaven and earth” doubling over and ending where it started.

You haven’t addressed Jesus saying, “There IS more than enough room in my Father’s home. (John 14:2 NLT)

“IS” is a done deal; not thousands of years in the future.

I’m glad your church stays relaxed. :)

Wade Burleson said...

What God "has prepared" is the mansion with many rooms - waiting to descend to earth when the King of Kings reigns over the Universe physically, literally and eternally.

Heaven "doubling over and ending where it started" is precisely what Scripture teaches.

Look at Revelation compared to Genesis 1. The trees of life are present in the end, just as in the beginning. No more tears and no more human death, just as in the beginning. The Lord living and walking among us, just as in the beginning. The only difference is we will be WED to Him, so no procreation and subduing of the earth, for it will be redeemed and subdued by Him. It seems the Bible has heaven doubling back and ending where it all began.

Rex Ray said...

Wade,

It seems you’ve changed your mind that Heaven does not exist, since you agree that God has “many rooms”. Our difference now is you say God is going to move these “many rooms” to earth someday. Also we differ if the “rooms’ are empty or not.

You believe everyone remains in their grave until God moves them to the “rooms”.

Since we are on the same subject, I will copy paste what I wrote on September 25, 2016 what Jesus said:

“But now, as to whether the dead will be raised—haven’t you ever read about this in the writing of Moses, in the story of the burning bush? Long after Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob had died, God said to Moses, I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. So he is the God of the Living, not the dead. You [ Wade :) ] have made a serious error.” (Mark 12:26-27 NLT)



You said, “…we will be WED to him…”

Have you gone Catholic on us? I mean Nuns believe they are wed to Jesus.

According to Scripture we are CHILDREN of God:

“…you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children…” (Romans 8:15)

“You are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:26)

“I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty. (2 Corinthians 6:18)

“I am writing to you who are God’s children…” (1 John 1:12)

“Dear friends, we are already God’s children…” (1 John 3:2)


P.S.
Tomorrow, we’re going to Seattle for a week for my niece’s son’s wedding. It will be like a large family reunion. My brother and sisters will be there.