Nazarene Principles ©2000
The Earth and Mankind
#218. The Nazarene continued in his model prayer, ‘Let your Will be done, as in heaven, also on earth.’ (Matthew 6:10) We have seen how the coming of the Kingdom accomplishes God’s will for heaven. Now Jesus prays regarding the Divine Will for the earth, the Fourth Nazarene Principle.
#219. GOD’S ORIGINAL PURPOSE. The Book of Genesis records the great care that went into the progressive preparation of the earth for man and woman as the summit of earthly creation. The account in the first chapter is startlingly similar to the general sequence as understood by most scientists. Whoever wrote this record knew what they were talking about. There are those astrophysicists who state the Big Bang creation of the universe anticipated that type of human and animal species which would populate the earth and sea. A few remarks from well-known scientists and observers represent this support for the record in Genesis.
#220. Rocket scientist Dr. Werner von Braun: "The natural laws of the universe are so precise that we have no difficulty building a spaceship to fly to the moon and can time the flight with the precision of a fraction of a second. These laws must have been set by somebody."
#221. Molecular biologist Michael Denton: "The complexity of the simplest known type of cell is so great that it is impossible to accept that such an object could have been thrown together suddenly by some kind of freakish, vastly improbable, event… But it is not just the complexity of living systems which is so profoundly challenging, there is also the incredible ingenuity that is so often manifest in their design. It is at a molecular level where… the genius of biological design and the perfection of the goals achieved are most pronounced… Everywhere we look, to whatever depth we look, we find an elegance and ingenuity of an absolutely transcending quality, which so mitigates against the idea of chance. Is it really credible that random processes could have constructed a reality, the smallest element of which a functional protein or gene is complex beyond our own creative capacities, a reality which is the very antithesis of chance, which excels in every sense anything produced by the intelligence of man? … Between a living cell and the most highly ordered non-biological system, such as a crystal or a snowflake, there is a chasm as vast and absolute as it is possible to conceive."
#222. Professor of physics, Chet Raymo: "I am dazzled… Every molecule seems miraculously contrived for its task."
#223. In God and the Astronomers, Robert Jastrow, astronomer: "The details differ, but the essential elements in the astronomical and biblical accounts of Genesis are the same: the chain of events leading to man commenced suddenly and sharply at a definite moment in time, in a flash of light and energy… Now we see how the astronomical evidence leads to a biblical view of the origin of the world… For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries."
#224. In the Centre of Immensities, British astronomer Sir Bernard Lovell: "The probability of … a chance occurrence leading to the formation of one of the smallest protein molecules is unimaginably small. Within the boundary conditions of time and space which we are considering it is effectively zero."
#225. The Nazarene himself believed in the Genesis account and quotes from it. (Matthew 19:5) God’s purpose for the human species and for earth is stated in the record: ‘And God made man according to the image of God, male and female He made them. And God blessed them, saying, “Increase and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it.”’ (Genesis 1:27, 28) This subduing of the earth was likely to take the form of proper cultivation, no doubt with a respect for the environment of which Adam and Eve were part and parcel. It was to begin in a paradise garden already planted by God in a geographically located spot near present day Turkey. (Genesis 2:10-14) The record states it this way: ‘And Yehwah God planted a garden paradise eastward in Eden and placed there the man whom he had formed. And Yehwah God took the man whom he had formed and placed him in the Paradise of Delight to cultivate and keep it.’ (Genesis 2:8,15) Clearly, it was God’s purpose or will for man to live in a Paradise garden of pleasure and with Eve’s partnership to spread this garden over the entire globe until earth was peopled with one family living in eternal harmony.
#226. That God intended unending life on earth is illustrated in his warning regarding the Tree of Life in the center of the garden landscape: ’If Adam take of the Tree of Life and eat and so he shall live for ever.’ (Genesis 3:23) Living forever on earth would have been Adam’s natural instinctive hope, having been created to continue living forever if he would only remain obedient and loyal to his Creator. Indeed, Adam was hard-wired with internal soft-ware that would function forever. This hope was passed down through the Patriarchs (Job 14:13-15) to the Nation of Israel. (Isaiah 26:19)
#227. God’s will for the earth has not changed for mankind in general. King David sang about this prospect for the earth: ‘The meek and the righteous shall inherit the earth and dwell upon it forever… Yehowah established the earth on her sure foundation, it shall not be moved for ever.’ (Psalm 37:11, 29;104:5) David’s son, King Solomon wrote: ‘A generation goes and a generation comes, but the earth stands for ever;’ (Ecclesiastes 1:4) and, ‘(Messiah) will have subjects from sea to sea.’ (Psalm 72:8)
#228. It has always been mankind’s inner wish to never die but continue alive forever. God planted this hope in the heart and mind of the human species. This inner desire is reflected in a paraphrase of Psalm 49:11, 7, 9: ‘Their inward thought is that their dynasties shall continue for ever but none of them can even redeem a dear brother, nor give to God a ransom for his nearest kin, that he should still live forever and not see death and decay in the grave.’ Yes, people want to live and they will do almost anything to continue living even if that life is filled with pain and not as satisfying as they would wish. And, when they have free time to themselves they tend to return to some garden environment in the mountains, tropical beaches or desert oasis. More and more modern humanity is realizing its true roots in Eden and is today concerned about what it has done to the environment. Paradise breathes in the soul of man. Everlasting life bubbles out of the human concept of itself as a creature meant to live forever.
#229. So, God’s original purpose was for the perfect human couple, Adam and Eve, to live forever as human souls on earth in a global paradise surrounded by billions of offspring. This is obviously not the situation today, so something went wrong. What was it? In a word: rebellion. However, this apostasy started, not on earth, but in the celestial realm.
#230. To teach his first human creation Adam a lesson, something their Creator and Father might rightly do, God laid only a single command with a sanction upon the Man, ‘Of the tree of knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day you eat of it you shall surely die.’ (Genesis 2:17) It follows that Adam was intended to live forever in obedience. Adam was smart enough to know what the word “die”296 meant, the opposite of life. It meant a returning to the dust of Eden’s ground. He no doubt could observe this happening with animals297 from time to time. An invisible enemy, a spirit298 rebel made himself a Resister299 or Opposer, a Satan. At the same time he became a lair or slanderer, a Devil, by successfully leading a rebellion. His first willing victims were Adam and Eve. We will discuss this enemy of God in the Seventh Nazarene Principle.
|296||DIE. This is a primitive root mūt regarding which TWOT, Vol 1, page 497 states: “Since God’s purpose for our first parents was never-ending life, the introduction of death was an undesirable but necessary result of disobedience.”|
|297||ANIMALS. Compare 2 Peter 2:12.|
|298||SPIRIT. Compare Ezekiel 28:12-19.|
|299||RESISTER. Compare Job 1:6; Zechariah 3:1. Gesenius' Hebrew Grammar (GK), §126 d and e, states: "The article is, generally speaking, employed to determine a substantive wherever it is required by Greek and English; thus: . . . (d) When terms applying to whole classes are restricted (simply by usage) to particular individuals . . . or things, e.g. adversary, the adversary, Satan ..."|
#231. Using a lowly serpent, perhaps much as a ventriloquist or by actual possession of the reptile,300 this Rebel lied about God as to the outcome of disobeying God. He posed a deceptive question to the woman: ‘Is it true301 God said to you, “You shall not eat of every tree?”’ and then continues to contradict God directly, ‘You shall not surely die for God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will become opened and you will be as gods302 knowing good and evil.’ (Genesis 3:1-4) It was the “Original Serpent” who fostered the lie303 that they would not die but remain alive on earth forever despite their disobedience. The Slanderer accused God of withholding important knowledge as if He had something to hide. A great controversy304 required a universal solution. The rest is history.
|300||REPTILE. Compare Genesis 3:1 with Revelation 12:9. Note the words “spirit of divination” at Ac 16.16; literally, "with a spirit of python." Gr., ekhousan pneuma pythona. God himself showed the possibility of this at Numbers 22:28. (Compare Isaiah 14:13.)|
|301||IS IT TRUE? The question deceptively infers the Serpent has other information contradictory to what Eve has learned.|
|302||GODS. The Hebrew is plural elohiym (Strongs # 430) and lacks the definite article. Some would render it “God” as the plural of majesty.|
|303||LIE. Compare John 8:44 and Revelation 12:9. Note Hebrews 2:14 and 2 Corinthians 4:4.|
|304||CONTROVERSY. Compare Job chapters 1 and 2.|
#232. Still childless and with an entire human race waiting in their loins, God passed sentence on the first couple and their potential “world” of children. Yehowah rendered the judgment: ‘In the sweat of your face (Adam) shall you eat your bread until you return to the earth out of which you were taken, for earth you are and to earth you shall return.’ (Genesis 3:20) Something similar is stated by King Solomon, ‘For the fate of humanity and the fate of beasts is the same, as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and man has no advantage over the beasts. All go to one place. All are of the dust and all will turn to dust again. Who is certain that the spirit of humanity goes up to heaven or that the spirit of the beasts goes down to earth?’ (Ecclesiastes 3:19-21 RSV, BAS)
#233. This same book describes the condition of the dead, ‘For to him that is joined to all the living there is hope: for a living dog is better than a dead lion. For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not anything… Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.’ (Ecclesiastes 9:5, 10 KJV) As pointed out earlier, the dead are unconscious in sleep. (John 11:11-14) The Psalmist puts it another way, ‘His breath shall go forth and he shall return to his earth. In that day all his thoughts shall perish.’ (Psalm 146:3, 4)
#234. A judgment was passed upon all of Adam’s offspring. It was the curse of a death-causing disease. The DNA gone amuck and though the hard-wiring of the brain continued to long for continuos life on earth, the fleshly mechanism was doomed to grow old and die. Moses said it this way, ‘The Rock, his work is perfect. They have corrupted themselves. Their spot is not the spot of His children.’ (Deuteronomy 32:4, 5) And Job moans, ‘Who can bring a clean thing out of something unclean?’ (Job 14:4) David weeps, ‘In sin did my mother conceive me.’ (Psalm 51:1) Solomon speaks in wisdom, ‘God made the race of men upright but many a cunning wile they have contrived.’ (Ecclesiastes 7:29 MOF) And Paul writes, ‘Through one man (Adam) sin entered into the world and through sin, death. So death passed to all men as all sin… By the one offense of Adam many died… Death reigned through Adam… It is appointed for men to die once and after this death, judgment.’ (Romans 5:12, 15, 17; Hebrews 9:27)
#235. Were the offspring of Adam, an estimated 20 billion persons, left without hope? Not according to Paul, for he writes, ‘For the earnest expectation of the (human) creation is eagerly expecting the revelation of the Sons of God. For the (human) creation was subjected to vanity, not willingly, but by Him who subjected it, on the basis of a hope, that also the (human) creation would be liberated from slavery to death and corruption in the grave, into the glorious liberty of the Children of God.’ (Romans 8:19-21) This hope was first inferred in the Edenic prophecy of Genesis 3:15 which we have discussed earlier as part of the Bible’s prophetic puzzle.
#236. Note in this portion of Romans that there are two305 classifications among the human creation: a) expectant human creation with the hope of liberation from death and decay which translates into living forever on earth as Children of God; and, b) the Sons of God to be revealed who await an adoption in heaven and from where they will rule as kings. (Romans 8:23; Revelation 20:4, 6) These rulers and their subjects are described in Daniel: ‘And the Kingdom and the dominion and the greatness of the Kingdom (realm) under the whole heaven shall be given to the People of the Saints of the Most High, whose Kingdom is an everlasting Kingdom. All dominions shall serve and obey them.’ (Daniel 7:27) The Psalm of Solomon reads in agreement: ‘The King (Messiah) will come down like rain upon mown fields, as showers that water the earth. In (Messiah’s) days shall the righteous flourish and abundance of peace as long as the moon endures. (Messiah) will have subjects from sea to sea and from the River (Euphrates) to the ends of the earth.’ (Psalm 72:6-8)
|305||TWO. Compare something similar at 1 Corinthians 15:22-24 and Revelation 20:4-6. (1 John 2:2)|
#237. WHAT HOPE FOR DEAD MANKIND? Billions of people lie dead in the grave or in some watery deep or have long since disappeared in corruption and decay. When someone dies they are buried or cremated or otherwise given some religious ceremony or memorium. Then they are laid to rest. According to the Bible they enter what the Hebrews called Sheol and the Greeks, Hades. The Greek Hades literally means “unseen” and using all those verses where the word occurs, it is a place of the unseen where the dead are granted a temporary rest in sleep. Both words refer to the grave where the dead await a resurrection and Judgment Day. (Hebrews 9:27; Revelation 20:12-14)
#238. This resurrection is first promised in the Book of Job, ‘For a mortal born of a woman is short-lived and full of trouble. He falls like a flower that has bloomed. He departs like a shadow and cannot continue. For there is hope for a tree. Even if it should be cut down it will blossom again. But a man that has died is utterly gone and when a mortal has fallen he is no more. Man that has lain down in death shall certainly not rise again306 till heaven be dissolved. They shall not awake from their sleep.’ (Job 14:11,13 LXX) Up to this point it appears very bleak for mankind, but Job, with hope, continues: ‘O, that you would keep me in Hades, hidden until your wrath ceases. Set me a time and remember me! For if a man should die, shall he live again? I will wait until I exist again.’307 (Job 14:14, 15 LXX) These verses are taken from the Jewish Greek Septuagint of the Third Century BC and the recorded speech is thought to have occurred around the year 1600 BC. It is the first reference to a resurrection.
|306||RISE AGAIN. This is virtually the root for the word “resurrection,” anaste. The Hebrew quwm (Strongs # 6965) is a primitive root meaning “rise”. Related Greek words occur in the LXX at Isaiah 26:19 and Daniel 12:13.|
|307||UNTIL I EXIST AGAIN. The Greek is palin genomai. The Hebrew text may read: “I will wait until my change (chaliyphah Strongs # 2487) comes. You shall call and I will answer you. You shall long for the work of Your hands.” Compare KJV: change; NJB: relief; ASV: release.|
239. Note Hades is a concealed place to which Job prays to be hidden from God’s anger. Not a place of torment for damned, otherwise he would not ask God to protect him there. It is a place of unconscious sleep, stored safely in God’s infinite memory, awaiting that time when Job would “exist again” or receive his “change.” Sixteen centuries before the Nazarene, Job uses the words palin genomai to be borrowed by Jesus’ translator when he promises his disciples: ‘In the new world308 (the re-creation) (the Saints) will sit on thrones to judge.’ (Matthew 19:28) Here the Nazarene’s words are translated into Greek with palingenesia as if Job were paraphrased. [For more details see the online publication Where Are the Dead? In Nazarene Commentary© CD-ROM.]
|308||NEW WORLD. Various renderings are: KJV: regeneration; KNX: new birth; RIEU: world is born anew; MON: New Creation; WMS: new order; BER: new age.|
240. Even Jesus himself went to Hades for a temporary rest. David foretells it this way, ‘I foresaw the Lord always before my face. My flesh shall rests securely in hope because you will not leave my soul in Hades nor will you allow your Holy One to see decay in the grave.’ (Psalm 16:8-10) Peter quotes this verse when he tells the Jews, ‘It is permissible to speak plainly concerning David, that he both died and was buried and his tomb is among us down to this day. David, seeing before hand, spoke concerning the resurrection of the Messiah, that his soul was not left in Hades nor did his flesh see decay in the grave.’ (Acts 2:29-31) Thus, our Lord went to Hades (or, “hell” KJV) and waited in sleep until the third day.
241. That all of the dead in Hades will be raised and then judged and thereafter live once again on an earth transformed into an Edenic Paradise, both Paul and John show, when they say, ‘God has set a Day in which He is going to judge righteously and in justice the inhabited earth (to come), by a Man He has appointed, having furnished proof of this to all persons by resurrecting this Man from the dead… And the sea gave up the dead and death and Hades gave up their dead. And the dead, the great and the small, were judged individually according to their works.’ (Acts 17:31; Hebrews 2:5; Revelation 20:13) Regarding the extent of this resurrection Paul testifies, ‘I believe in The God that there is going to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous.’ (Acts 24:15) The subject of resurrection and judgment has been discussed earlier where it was shown that the Last Resurrection will occur after the Thousand Years of Messiah’s reign over the earth.
#242. Mankind as a whole, including the faithful ancients among the People of God, still await that Day of Resurrection and Judgment. Their resurrection cannot occur until the Saints are raised first. Regarding this Paul writes to the Hebrews in his day, ‘In faith and still believing, all of these patriarchs died without receiving the promises, but they did see them far into the distance, for God had foreseen something better for us (Saints) in order that the ancients might not be perfected apart from us.’ (Hebrews 11:13, 39, 40) These ancients held that hope foretold by Isaiah, from whom the Nazarene quotes: ‘The dead will be resurrected and those in the tombs will be raised, rising early in the earth, numerous as dewdrops… For the hour comes in which all those in the tombs will hear the Son’s voice and come out, those who have done good to a resurrection of life, those who did vile things to a resurrection of condemnation.’ (Isaiah 26:19 LXX; John 5:28, 29)
#243. THE BASIS OF RESURRECTION HOPE. When Adam sinned he brought judgment upon his unborn children, the entire human race. God’s impartiality called for a balancing of the scales of justice by one opposite act of redemption and justification. This He provided in the form of his only-begotten Son, the first of all His creation. (Exodus 21:23; Leviticus 24:18; Isaiah 53:10-12; Romans 5:12-17)
#244. A great controversy was raised by the Arch Deceiver who had turned himself into such a Manslayer, Opposer and Liar. (John 8:44) The issue is dramatized in the Book of Job, actually the Bible’s second book. Satan challenged God that His human creation only served Him for selfish motive and for what they could get out of it. If men such as Job were subjected to a bitter life they would all curse God to His face. (Job chapters 1 and 2) It became an issue of God’s right to rule and human integrity to God. If God had no subjects, then He had no right to rule. (Proverbs 14:28 NEB, RSV) Additionally, this charge maligned the highest life-form among all God’s creatures, the Logos, the Son himself, for even his motives would be called into question.
#245. Fittingly, it was this One who came to earth and became the Nazarene, a perfect Last or Second Adam, in every way a complete hominid or anthropoid. (Daniel 7.13, LXX, VUL; Romans 5:14; 1 Corinthians 15:47) The Son prepared to offer himself as a sacrificial ransom for the human race: ‘The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his soul a ransom for many.’ (Matthew 20:28) In this process he demonstrated a man like Adam could have kept his faith in God. At the same time the Nazarene set the pattern of perfect loyalty to God and selflessness in his relations with other humans.
#246. The Nazarene knew this was in fulfillment of the Messianic prophecies: ‘(The Messiah) is to be a man of suffering and acquainted with the bearing of sickness. He bears our sins and is pained for us. He was wounded on account of our sins and was bruised because of our iniquities. The chastisement of our peace was upon him. By his bruises we were healed. Yehowah gave him up for our sins. He bore our sins and was delivered up because of their iniquities… (Messiah says), “Sacrifice and burnt offerings you did not want, but a body You prepared for me. Behold, I come to do your will, O my God, and your law is within my heart. I have preached righteousness in the great congregation. I have declared your salvation.’ (Isaiah 53:3-12; compare Acts 8:26-35; Psalm 40:6-10 and the quote of it at Hebrews 10:5-10)
#247. This selfless act of obedience is called the Ransom309 and is the means of redemption and justification. It canceled the debt and burden of sin and along with it the guilt. This declaration of “Not Guilty” is based on the faith and obedience of those who believe. (John 3:16, 19-21, 36) The result is describe by Hebrews 10:22: ‘Approach (God) with a genuine heart and in the complete conviction of faith with our hearts sprinkled from a wicked conscience and our bodies bathed with clean Water.’ This new standing before God results in a cleansed conscience which comes from the knowledge that God through Christ has canceled sin’s condemnation. (Romans 8:1-3; Hebrews 9:9, 14; 1 Peter 3:21)
|309||RANSOM. Compare Matthew 20:28; Mark 10:45; Romans 3:24; 8:23; 1 Corinthians 1:30; Ephesias 1:7, 14; 4:30; Colossians 1:1; 1 Timothy 2:6; 1 Peter 1:18)|
#248. This new standing before God as one of His children, with this “cleansed conscience,” may be compared to having one’s life completely recorded on a tape, with every word, thought and deed transcribed for others to read. The thought of others knowing this will weaken the knees of most. However, if God were to erase all the bad, evil or wicked from this record of our humanity, leaving only those good and charming sides to our character, then we would be quite willing to let others hear our life account. That feeling you would have knowing that such a “tape” had now been doctored in your favor is the same sense of forgiveness one will enjoy once pronounced “Forgiven” and “Not Guilty.” What is required, however?
#249. The same is required of each believer that was asked of the Nazarene: selfless love and humble obedience. (Philippians 2:1-9) The apostle John puts this simply, in two prime requirements: ‘And this is the commandment: we should believe on the name of God’s Son, Jesus Christ; and, be loving one another just as the Son gave us the command.310 Those who keep this commandment abide in God and God dwells in them.’ (1 John 3:23, 24) How this belief and love are exercised will be shown in the consideration of the Sixth Nazarene Principle.
|310||COMMAND. Compare John 13:39; 15:12.|
#250. HAS GOD’S WILL CHANGED? Not at all, for God said to Isaiah, ‘Yehowah made the heaven, this God that created the earth, and made it and marked it out. He made it not in vain but formed it to be inhabited… So shall my words be, whatever shall proceed out of my mouth. It shall by no means turn back until all the things I willed shall have been accomplished… The wolf shall feed with the lamb and the leopard shall lie down with the kid. The young calf and bull and lion shall feed together and their young shall be together. The lion will eat straw like the ox. An infant shall put his hand on the holes of asps and on the nest of young asps. They shall not hurt nor shall they be able to destroy any one on my holy mountain. For the whole world is filled with the knowledge of Jehovah. Behold, a righteous King shall reign and princes shall govern with justice. The works of righteousness shall be peace and the righteous shall be confident for ever. The desert will blossom as the rose. Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf shall hear. Then shall the lame man leap as the stag and the tongue of the speechless shall speak plainly.’ (Isaiah 45:18; 55:11; see chapters 11, 25, 32, 35)
#251. Though the original fulfillment of these verses have strong and direct application to the restoration of Israel and the establishment of a New Israel of God (Galatians 6:15, 16), it is in language which is apropos to the condition in a restored Eden. Without going into great detail, all of this will occur after the dead are released from Hades, Death and the watery grave of the Sea, following the Thousand Years. (Revelation 20:5, 13, 14) But, over whom does the Messiah and his Saints reign during the Thousand Years?
#252. GOD’S WILL DURING THE THOUSAND YEARS. That there will be “nations” on earth during the Thousand Years is shown in a paraphrase of John’s apocalyptic vision, ‘Satan can no longer mislead those nations in the four corners of the earth… for the nations will walk by the light of New Jerusalem.’ (Revelation 20:3; 21:24) Since these “nations” are not the resurrected dead they must be made up of survivors of Armageddon. They are part of those tribes of earth which had originally lamented at the Appearance of the Son before Armageddon. (Revelation 20:5; 21:24 KJV; Matthew 24:30; Zechariah 14:16)
#253. In Revelation 7:1-3 four angels are commanded to restrain the destructive force of the four winds so that no harm befalls the earth with its green vegetation. But, when these four angels are released, what will be the final result? The Apocalypse predicts, ‘Release the restraints on the Four Angels bound upon the river Euphrates… And the Four Angels were released, those angels prepared for the hour and day and month and year in order that they may kill one-third of mankind.’ (Revelation 9:14, 15) According to this, one-third of humanity will perish with the destruction of Babylon the Great and in the war of Armageddon to follow. Two-thirds of mankind will survive.311
|311||SURVIVE. Compare Zechariah 14:14-16 and their source in Revelation 22:1, 3, 5. (Note Revelation 21:24 in KJV)|
#254. Though Messiah and his associate Saints are the only government to rule earth during the Thousand Years, those survivors will still be affected by death as generations come and go. (Eccleiastes 1:4) Isaiah foretold this: ‘And it will come to pass from month to month and from week to week, all flesh shall come to worship before me in Jerusalem, says Yehowah. And they shall go forth and see the carcasses of the men that have transgressed against me… There shall be no child who dies an untimely death nor an old man who shall not complete his time. He who dies at a hundred years shall be reckoned a youth. The sinner who dies at a hundred years shall also be accursed. They shall build houses and dwell in them. They shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit.’ (Isaiah 66:23; 65:20, 21)
#255. Thus successive generations will come and go during this period of judgment. By the end of the Thousand Years when Satan is released from his prison, these nations will have spread abroad in the earth. One can only speculate on what mankind can produce under the godly influence of Messiah’s rule. It would be rightly expected that the condition of the earth will be much like a global Eden. And though some difficulties and hardships may occur, it will be light-years of improvement over that world dominated by the god Satan. (2 Corinthians 4:4) The final goal of this new world is stated by Paul at 1 Corinthians 15:28, ‘That God may become everything to everyone.’ (MOF) A world God-centered!
#256. However, upon Satan’s release there will be those persons who are misled. They will make an attack against the New Jerusalem but divine fire will destroy them. Satan will be destroyed forever by the Second Death. Then, all those who have lived on earth will be raised to the Last Judgment. The righteous will enter Life in eternal paradise with “the day of eternity” (2 Peter 3:18 WEY) before them, with endless possibilities. The wicked will be destroyed by the Second Death.312 Thus, this portion of the Lord’s Prayer and the Fourth Nazarene Principle taught by the Jesus will be fulfilled.
|312||SECOND DEATH. Compare Revelation 20:7-15. For details on chapters 20 to 22 in the Book of Revelation see the publication Nazarene Apocalypse© in Nazarene Commentary© CD-ROM.|
#257. SUMMARY. A consideration of these four Nazarene principles or truths ought to help in understanding what God’s purpose is:
#258. Does not such a prayer thrill your heart? Does it not make you glad you understand these four Principles in the Nazarene’s teachings? Are you not happy the heavenly Father has thought of you and done so much in preparing the future with you in mind? Are you not joyous that a single Human Being loved you so much he was willing to sacrifice his life in your behalf so you could come back into right relations with God? Such heartfelt feelings of emotion ought to move any lover of God to discover His will and learn to walk in the footsteps of the Nazarene. How to do this is explained in the last three of the Nazarene Principles of the Nazarene.
Nazarene Commentary 2000©
Mark Heber Miller
©2000 All Rights Reserved