|Hebrews 12 |
1 Having such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us,1 let us lay aside every weight, and the sin that does so easily entangle us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2 Turn you eyes away from other things and fix them on Jesus, the author and finisher [perfecter] of our faith,2 who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. [By revelations to you Jesus authors your faith, increases your faith, and finally perfects your faith, until you attain salvation, (freedom from sin), and later union with Christ and God. From the Word of the Lord within: "Faith is a series of revelations." You sit and wait on God, listening, watching, and then obeying. His spoken words heard impart the life of God into your heart, John 6:63. You grow in faith with each revelation received. ]
3 For consider him who endured such opposition from sinners against himself, so that you will not grow weary and faint in your minds.
4 You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in striving against sin.3
5 And you have forgotten the exhortation that speaks to you as to children, "My son, do not despise the chastening [correcting rebuke and discipline] of the Lord, nor faint when you are rebuked by him.
6 For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and scourges every son whom he accepts."4 [The pain of a wound cleanses away evil, so do stripes purge the inward parts [including the heart] of man, Pro 20:30.]
7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom the father does not chasten?
8 But if you are without chastisement [correcting rebuke and discipline], of which all [true sons of God] must share, then you are illegitimate,5 and not sons. [He who has suffered in the flesh has finished with sin. So that you should not live the rest of your time in the flesh in the lusts of men, but [live according] to the will of God. 1 Pet 4:1-2.]
9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh who corrected us, and we gave them respect; shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live?
10 For truly for a short time they chastened us according to their best judgment; but God chastens [rebukes and disciplines us] for our benefit, to enjoy a share in his holiness.6
11 Now no chastening for the present seems to be joyous, but grievous; nevertheless afterwards it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who are tried by it. [As many as I love, I chastise [rebuke, discipline]. Be zealous therefore, and repent. Rev 3:19]
12 Therefore strengthen the weak hands and the feeble knees,
13 And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed.
14 Pursue peace with all men, and holiness [consecration, sanctification], without which no man will see the Lord.7 [From the word of the Lord within: "You must be holy as I am holy. Pursue righteousness and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord. "]
15 Watching diligently to see that no man misses the grace of God; or that any root of bitterness should spring up to trouble you, and cause many to become defiled;
16 See that there is no one who is sexually immoral, or a profane person [godless] such as Esau, who sold his birthright for one morsel of meat.
17 For you know that afterward, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected. For he found no place for repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.
18 For you have not come to the mountain that can be touched, and that burned with fire; nor to blackness, and darkness, and tempest,
19 And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice those who heard begged that the word should not be spoken to them any more.
20 (For they could not endure that which was commanded, "If so much as a beast touches the mountain, it will be stoned, or shot through with an arrow."
21 And the sight was so terrible that Moses said, "I exceedingly fear and quake.")
22 But you have come to mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,
23 To the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of righteous men made perfect,8
25 See that you do not refuse him who speaks. For if they did not escape, who refused him who spoke on the earth, how much more will we be liable, if we turn away from him who speaks from heaven [which is in your heart].9
26 Whose voice then shook the earth; but now he has promised, saying, "Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also heaven."
28 Therefore since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be moved or shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.
29 For our God is a consuming fire. [He burns by fire the sin in our hearts, destroying the works of the devil. For those who have endured on the inward cross, his fire is the one baptism, the baptism of fire, which is the baptism of death; and then those true seekers are raised (resurrected) with Christ to be a new creature.]
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1 Having such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us, This statement is further evidence that we share the physical space with multiple dimensions, as the following scriptures testify:
He has made from one blood all nations of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined the allotted times and the boundaries of their habitation; So that they should seek the Lord, and perhaps might feel after him and find him, though he is not far from every one of us. For in him we live and move, and have our being; Acts 17:26-28
One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. Eph 4:6
Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I will not see him?" says the Lord. "Do I not fill the heavens and earth?" says the Lord. Jer 23:24
Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free, but Christ is all and in all. Col 3:11
Yet for us there is only one God, the Father, from whom all things exist. 1 Cor 8:6
When we have made seeking God's righteousness as the first priority of our life, (evidenced by exposing ourselves to God's commands through waiting on Him in humble silence), we are surrounded and observed by both good spirits and evil spirits. However, we do not see the spirits because we are in a lower physical dimension. George Fox described the Kingdom of Hell overlaid on our dimension, and the Kingdom of God overlaid on top of the Kingdom of Hell. Quantum physics has evidence of eight dimensions, which with the aid of Fox's description we can attempt to enumerate: 1) length, 2) width, 3) depth, 4) time, 5) paradise — the outer court of heaven or the temple, 6) the kingdom of heaven — the inner court of heaven or the temple, 7) Christ, 8) the Father. The Kingdom of God is within and around us. Luke 17:20-21. It is a parallel dimension, sharing the same physical space. We are told to seek this kingdom of God as our first priority in life, which is in us and around us and does not come with sign or observation. We cannot see these other dimensions because our eye, hearing, touch, smell, and taste are only able to sense the physical dimension that we are in.
For multiple dimensions to share the same physical space is not too hard to understand when you consider this fact: in every atom there is the nucleus made up of protons and neutrons, with electrons orbiting around the nucleus; but the vacant space between the orbiting electrons and the nucleus is a minimum of 10,000 times the size of the nucleus itself. The electrons are spinning so fast, our eye sees everything as solid; and we really don't know anything about the vacant space.
A second key phrase that bears examination is: the race set that is set before us, (in Having such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin that does so easily entangle us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us), which implies it is not a random course, but one that has been created for your individual journey or race; and this is supported by all things work together for good, for those who love God and are called according to his purpose, Rom 8:28. While we are seeking, the creator of the universe is watching over us, protecting us, planning for us, moving the world to our benefit, and always there for us. With this assurance, we know that everything that comes our way is his will for us; and whatever happens, even if it appears to be a problem at the time, we know as it is written, all things work together for good, for those who love God and are called according to his purpose, Rom 8:28; and because we keep his commands, he knows we love him, John 14:23. So we know that everything that happens to us has been willed by God, to help us grow, and we have a peace that is based on the love of God to us. We can cast all of our worries and fears upon him, 1 Peter 5:7, and depend on him to work everything out to our benefit. We have confidence that he is working for us, even when we can't see how it is happening; we know he controls the whole universe, and to work our life to his union, is effortless for him.
All things includes what is alive and what is not alive; all things includes people. He can control the little details of men's lives without violating their free will and self-confidence. Those chosen by God are protected by Him while they complete their seeking course; as is written, "all things work together for good for those who love God (or as argued, God loves) and are called according to his purpose." But he only provides protection to those who are seeking him in love and whom he has called; from the Word of the Lord within: "All other people, destined for reconciliation after this life, live without protection." We have free will, but with the little details, he can move us around like chess board pieces and not violate our free will, because the insignificant details that he controls don't violate our heart's principles or our self-confidence; choices that follow our heart's principles and affect our self-confidence are made by us independently, and He does not override those decisions in anyone. This is not making something good out of a bad situation of which he had no control; he is in control of everything around those whom he has called according to his purpose, and who love him! For what? From the Word of the Lord within, "the earth exists for the saints." The earth is everyone's opportunity to become one with God as a son, but for those not so motivated, they are only obstacles, tests, and polishing stones in the illusions of this life, which appears that everyone chooses everything independently, but as the Word of the Lord within said: "every man is put in place by God." The illusion is there is no God. The illusion is that God does not control anything. The illusion is that we are all independent, under no control. It is a necessary illusion;* the nurturing soil to allow love to grow without coercion. From the Word of the Lord within: "A necessary illusion." Why is it necessary? To produce sons of love without coercion; see Why Evil is Allowed for More.
* Quantum physics has recently discovered that the entire world is an illusion; that there is no material world like science previously thought. Instead atoms, previously thought to be the basic material building block, are known to made up of tornado-like vortexes of energy; and energy is considered to be spirit. This is in agreement with the scripture: "Yet for us there is only one God, the Father, from whom all things exist, and for whom we exist; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom all things are made, by and through whom we exist." 1 Cor 8:6. God is light. God is a consuming fire. God is a spirit. Since we are all created beings, created from the infinite energy that makes up God, obviously He can control us when He so desires.
There is a third key word in this verse: cloud, (in Having such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin that does so easily entangle us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us). Heaven appears to our spiritual eye as in a mist of cloud:
Behold, he comes with clouds; and every eye will see him, and also those who pierced him;
and all the peoples of the earth will wail because of him. Even so, Amen. Rev 1:7.
2000 years ago, to the Jewish High Priest and the Pharisees at his trial, Jesus said..
you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven. Mark 14:62
Even Daniel in 538 BC saw Jesus coming on the clouds of heaven: I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. Dan 7:13.
Sing to God, sing praises to his name, extol him who rides upon the clouds — his name is JAH — rejoice before him. Psa 68:4
2 Jesus, the author and finisher [perfecter] of our faith. Faith is revealed, Gal 3:23, by revelation to a person. Learning about Jesus, him being crucified, him being resurrected, and believing those events to be true, is not faith and is not believing in Jesus. Faith is hearing the word of God, (and believing it to be the Son of God who is speaking); hearing the word of God that is in your heart, so that you may obey it. Faith is listening, hearing, and obeying. Faith comes when you are led by the Spirit of God. Until you are led by the Spirit of God, you are under the inner law, which is your schoolmaster; Paul says in Gal 5:18 : if (and when) you are led (prompted, ordered, commanded) by the Spirit, you are not under the law. The law was our schoolmaster to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. Gal 3:24. When you hear the Word of God in your heart, and when you obey the Word of God in your heart, then you evidence your belief by walking in faith.
Your faith is increased with each revelation received, and everything to be learned about the Father or Jesus must be revealed inside your heart by revelation from Jesus, the author and finisher of your faith:
Faith is a journey. It has a beginning and a finish [or a perfection of your faith]. Faith is a series of revelations. Listening to, and obeying Jesus, is him being the author and finisher of your faith. One does not hear the Lord speak to you once to be justified. You must keep hearing and obeying until your sinful nature has been crucified on the inward cross of self-denial, to then receive faith at part of the fruit of the Spirit, which frees you from the law and justifies you. Faith must be authored by Jesus, and he authors faith by revelation, but not just by your belief that the Bible truly states Jesus to be the Son of God. From the Word of the Lord within: "Until you can witness receiving faith from Christ, you are under the law." When you hear and witness Him author your faith, he lays the foundation of your faith on rock;
Whoever comes to me, and listens to my words and does [practices, obeys] them, I will show you what he is like. He is like a man who built a house, and dug deep and laid the foundation securely built on a rock; and when the flood arose, the torrent beat violently upon that house, but could not shake it because it was founded on a rock. Luke 6:47-48.
And when you hear the Son of God speak his words to you, and you believe it to be him, the foundation of your faith has been set on rock, a rock so solid that the gates of Hell cannot prevail against it.
Jesus finishes [perfects] your faith when you see him bring your salvation:
he will appear the second time, not to bear sin, but to bring full salvation to those who are waiting for and expecting him. Heb 9:28
For the grace of God that brings salvation ... Tit 2:11
looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring eternal life. Jude 1:21
Receiving the end of your faith — the salvation of your souls. 1 Pet 1:9.
Your faith must stand in your experience of the power of God, not in words spoken by men or reading. The power of God is promised to deliver you [separate you] from your sins, which is salvation. You are saved through faith, and by faith your hearts are purified; but obviously in the beginning of faith, you are not purified, neither are you saved. You must contend for the faith, grow in the faith, build up your faith, increase in faith, perfect what is lacking in your faith, fight the good fight of faith, until victory when your faith is finished by the finisher; faith is a process and a journey, the end of which is to see Christ bring your salvation, to bring your eternal life.
By the grace of His revelations Jesus authors your faith, increases your faith, and finally perfects your faith, until you attain salvation, (freedom from sin), and later union with Christ and God. When you are in union with God and Christ, you no longer walk by sight; instead you walk in faith, hearing from the Spirit every and all words to speak, being shown by the Spirit everything you are to do, and being energized by the Spirit — thus you are doing the works of God, fulfilling his purpose in creating you. This walking in faith is walking in the light, love, and life; walking in the royal law of love; surpassing the law because you are under total control of the law-giver; no longer walking in restricted flesh, but walking as part of the body of Christ, wholly under control of the head of the one Church, Jesus Christ.
3 You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in striving against sin. Note! Paul speaks about striving against sin. This is the fight to victory, to overcome sin, to overcome the devil, to overcome the world, to crucify the lusts and affections of the flesh. The fight is hard. The cross is hard. Blood is not shed, but there is pain, and there is suffering; both being necessary to humiliate the selfish, beastly nature of every man — before God removes it by his grace.
4 For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and scourges every son whom he accepts. Scourging is serious physical pain; it is not to be imagined; it must be experienced before you can be rid of sin and attain salvation. The pain of a wound cleanses away evil, so do stripes purge the inward parts [including the heart] of man. Pro 20:30. To seek union with God is not always pleasant, especially the crucifixion of self.
Jesus said that before beginning, one should first sit down and calculate the cost whether he has sufficient means to finish it? Otherwise, when he has laid the foundation and is unable to complete, all who see it will begin to mock and jeer at him. Saying, This man began to build and was not able (worth enough) to finish. He is telling us to not even start, unless we are committed to going all the way, including death of self through suffering and tribulation. This commitment comes from a deep hunger, a hunger established by God to draw you to him. He already has far too many, calling themselves 'christians,' who never even started, much less finished, building his temple to completion in their hearts. But we can testify truly, that having gone through much suffering and tribulation, the pain is nothing compared to the reward of knowing God. For God has created us to be loved by him and for us to love him. He is pure, clean, holy, righteous, merciful, truthful, faithful, peaceful, full of joy, and abounding in love for us — eagerly awaiting the opportunity to show his love for us. But to be in his presence and receive his love, we must be changed to become pure to be able to receive his spirit in measure — our old wineskin can't hold the new wine — we must let him prepare us a new wineskin — so we can possess and enjoy the superior wine. From the Word of the Lord within: "Trust him. He will lead you and watch over you continually. He will never leave you."
Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because he who has suffered in his body is finished with sin. As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly life for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God. 1 Pet 4:1-2. Tribulation is not a hard day at the office, a car wreck, or some natural difficulty; it is unmistakably, supernaturally imposed.
For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps. 1 Peter 2:21.
5 if you are without chastisement [correcting rebuke and discipline], of which all [true sons of God] must share, then you are illegitimate, and not sons. If you have not been disciplined by God, you are illegitimate, in the pretense of being a make-believe Christian. If you have been disciplined, you know you are on the cross, you know you are in tribulation, and you know your salvation is assured. The rod and the staff of the Lord is comfort; pain is comfort — to know you are on the path, to know beneficial changes in you are shortly coming. The Lord said: As many as I love, I chastise [rebuke, discipline]. Be zealous therefore, and repent. Rev 3:19. Whom does the Lord love? Those who obey him: If a man loves me, he will keep my words; and my Father will love him, and we will come to him, and make our home with him [in his heart]. John 14:23. From the Word of the Lord within: "You are a son when Jesus appears in your heart to guide you."
6 To enjoy a share in his holiness. More of the true hope. That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before him, all the days of our life. Luke 1:74-75. For by one offering he has totally cleansed an perfected forever those who are sanctified and made holy. Heb 10:14. But now being made free from sin, and having become slaves to God, you have the reward of holiness, and at the end, everlasting life. Rom 6:22.
7 Pursue peace with all men, and holiness [consecration, sanctification], without which no man will see the Lord.
Pursue peace with all men.
From the Word of the Lord within: "Strive to live at peace with all men." If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live peaceably with everyone. Rom 12:18. Some of the efforts you must make to live at peace with everyone are as follows:
Forgive all offences from others by:
- As William Penn has said: "When your neighbor wrongs you, do not resent him; rather have pity for his lack of wisdom and understanding that would prevent his wrongful acts. We should make more haste to do right to our neighbor, than we do to wrong him; and instead of being revengeful, we should leave him to be judge of his own satisfaction or dissatisfaction with his unjust acts."
- Reject all anger against anyone, knowing it is hate and murder in your heart, which subjects you to judgment.
- Do not replay in your mind the injustices done to you, which only reinforces your temptation to hold anger over them. Force your mind to think of something else.
- Remembering all your sins done to others, and remembering that you have been forgiven by the Lord for them, ask yourself if you would have the Lord send them to Hell for what they have done to you?
- Pray for those who have treated you unjustly; even visualize hugging them in love.
- If possible, do good to those who have wronged you.
Don't argue about anything. Walk away from arguments. From the Word of the Lord within:
- The holy people of God should avoid contentions and protracted wrangling over the bitter truth; avoid public opposition.
- Never speak critically of any individual or any organization, no matter how deserving of criticism they are.
- Be blind to the faults of others. Before we correct, we must be corrected. He who points the finger had better make sure his finger is clean.
- Avoid foolish controversies.
- Fend off pointless questions.
- Strive to be low.
Pursue... holiness [consecration, purification], without which no man will see the Lord.
The Greek word for holiness above is a choice of 1) consecration, purification, 2) the effect of consecration, and 2a) the sanctification of heart and life. All of terms are characteristics of holiness. From the word of the Lord within: "You must be holy as I am holy. Pursue righteousness and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord. "
Unless you attain holiness while living on the earth, you will not see the Lord and you will be banned from heaven. Notice in the next verses, he counsels: Watching diligently to see that no man misses the grace of God. If grace is instant with saying a prayer or getting wet, how can you miss it? In the next verse he tells us we will miss grace by sexual immorality and profaneness, which is impurity; and Paul confirms that no man that is impure, sexually immoral, or covetous, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ.
8 When you are translated into the Kingdom of Heaven, in the Spirit you enter the company of the angels, other saints in the light, and the Father and Son. You share the inheritance of the saints in the light, dwelling in the light that no man can approach. George Fox wrote of this fellowship in heaven:
In which fellowship in the spirit you will have fellowship with God, the Father of spirits,
and all the scriptures given forth from the same spirit,
and with all the saints that gave them forth, and with their spirits;
through which spirit of God you will be brought,
and come to the spirits of just men, which are made perfect, and to God, the judge of all.
In which you will have an everlasting fellowship,
in which spirit you will have an understanding,
in which spirit you will come to worship God, the Father of spirits, and in the truth,
which the devil and his works are out of, and all the will worshippers.
So in that you will know the royal dominion and royal fellowship;
in which spirit you will have the spirit of wisdom,
in which you will know how to pray to God, who is a spirit,
and to praise and glorify the everlasting God, who lives forever and ever, amen!
And in that you will come to know and see to the beginning, before the world began,
and that which quenches, and grieves, and vexes the spirit of God;
and that prays, and that preaches, and that praises,
and yet grieves, and vexes, and quenches the spirit of God;
such God, the Father of spirits, accepts not,
that judge, rend to pieces, and tear one another about inventions.
Now you being led by the spirit of God up to God, the Father of spirits,
in which you have the fellowship,
out of all that you will be kept;
and in that spirit of God the Lord God Almighty preserve and keep you,
and in that meet and dwell,
in which your meetings may be preserved over all that which is in the world, that are out of the spirit of God;
who are in confusion, contending about the words.
Therefore you, in the spirit of God, answer that of God in them all.
So, in that dwell and live, and let no man take your crown.
9 See that you do not refuse him who speaks. For if they did not escape, who refused him who spoke on the earth, how much more will we be liable, if we turn away from him who speaks from heaven. God speaks to us from heaven. Where is heaven? The Kingdom of God is within you and around you. Luke 17:21; it is in your heart. Christ, who is the Word of God, dwells in your heart. We are bluntly told how easy it is to hear God speak from heaven in your heart:
For this command [the words spoken as a command] that I command you this day is not hidden from you, nor is it far off.
It is not in heaven, that you should say, 'Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it to us, that we may hear it, and do it?'
Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say, 'Who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it to us, that we may hear it, and do it?'
But the word is very near to you, in your mouth, and in your heart, so that you may obey it. Deu 30:10-14
But what did it say? "The word is near you, even in your mouth, and in your heart [so you may obey it];" that is, the word of faith, which we preach. Rom 10:8.
When you hear God command you to do something, or reason with you, you must heed and obey him; otherwise you will be subject to the fury of God in the next life, or even in this one too. Everyone has their day of visitation from God. Click here to see list of scriptures that show the consequences of not obeying the voice of the Lord within your heart.
10 Yet once more, signifies the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, so that those things that cannot be shaken may remain. This is an inward shaking, to remove the things of the world, leaving only the parts of the Kingdom. This is the separation of the wheat from the chaff. This is: Every valley will be filled, and every mountain and hill will be brought low; and the crooked will be made straight, and the rough ways will be made smooth. This occurs within a man. For more understanding on the many inward occurrences, see George Fox's outstanding writing: A WORD FROM THE LORD, TO ALL THE WORLD. As Paul said: Because that which may be known of God is revealed in them; for God has shown it to them. Rom 1:19.
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