Series: Christ in me/The prophetic/Changing paradigms
Sun am 13 February 2011 – Kobus Swart
Eph. 1:9-10; Gal. 4:4; Matt. 1:23; Matt. 11:11; Acts 2:14-16; Acts 3:18-21; Rev. 19:9-10; Isa. 55:11; Heb. 2:10; Heb. 1:1-4; John 12:24-25
Truth doesn’t stop growing; it is never stagnant. We easily get locked into past ways of understanding and this can prevent us from progressively experiencing more of God’s word in our lives. Here is another paradigm shift that can be described in this way: We are moving from doing to becoming. There is nothing wrong with doing – as long as the ‘doing’ follows that which has become a reality inside of us; otherwise it is religious dead works. Once we have become, the doing will be so much more effective, with so much less human energy.
The Messianic age started 2000 years ago when Father sent His Son, born of a woman. Jesus came in the fullness of time. (Gal. 4:4). We are still living in the fullness of time. The types and shadows referring to the coming of the Messiah in the Old Testament, have been fully and completely fulfilled in Jesus Christ. This has serious consequences for the way in which we view the prophetic time-table. All the prophets and the Law prophesied until John. John the Baptist was the last of the prophets predicting the coming of the Messiah. Then Jesus explained the enormity of this transition: Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet whoever is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he (Matt. 11:11). No-one (including all of the Old Testament prophets!) has arisen greater than John the Baptist. What a shift! But the least in the kingdom of God is greater than he! A new era started – the Messianic era; the kingdom of God came in Him. The Word became flesh.
When Jesus came he was called Immanuel – God with us (Matt. 1:23). The Word became flesh, and dwelt (tabernacled) among us, and we saw His glory (John 1:14). Jesus was the initial fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles. At the launch of His ministry the Father trumpeted, “This is My Son, My Chosen One; listen to Him!” (Luke 9:35). For some reason the Old Testament prophets never talked about a second coming. This Messianic age is busy unfolding and will reach a climax when the full stature has been reached. For God has allowed us to know the secret of His plan and it is this, He purposed long ago in His sovereign will that all human history should be consummated in Christ; that everything that exists in heaven or earth should find its perfection and fulfillment in Him (Eph 1: 9-10 – Phillips Translation). This plan was there before the foundation of the world. Why look for it anywhere else? Human history is going to find its consummation in the corporate Christ.
Apostles in the New Testament brought clarity about Old Testament prophecies concerning the coming of the Messiah: But Peter, taking his stand with the eleven, raised his voice and declared to them….this is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel (Acts 2:14-16). And again Peter said: But the things which God announced beforehand by the mouth of all the prophets, that His Christ would suffer, He has thus fulfilled. Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you, whom heaven must receive until the period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from ancient time (Acts 3:18-21). When the Word became flesh, the role and definition of prophecy changed! Apostles and the early church began to participate together as they identified the fulfillment of the Messianic prophecies, followed by the Word growing (being fleshed out) in their own hearts!
Prophecies have taken a new dimension since the Word became flesh. For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy (Rev. 19:9-10). There are times in which God, through the gift of prophecy will say things to individuals, but the obsession of making predictions about the second coming needs to be reviewed in the light of this. Take a look at another Messianic prophecy: So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it. (Isa 55:11) Jesus was the Word that became flesh. What was He sent for? To bring many sons to glory! Jesus will not stand before the Father empty handed. We must conform to the image of the Son (Rom. 8:29).
God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high (Heb. 1:1-4). He’s no longer speaking through prophets; He is now speaking through the Son in the sons – an unfolding truth.
When the Greeks wanted to see Jesus, the One who walked the streets of Galilee, Jesus refused to come out but sent them a message, Unless a seed falls in the ground and dies, it abides by itself alone. But if it dies (referring to Himself), the Seed will bring forth and multiply himself many times over (John 12:24-25). Presenting each man complete in Christ, is what ministry is all about. Once that has happened, we are going to see the biggest harvest and ingathering of all of history, because His voice will sound forth (John 7:37-38), “Those who are thirsty come!”
God is going to bless the original formula of Genesis 1 – where they were created in His likeness and His image, and He gave them a command, “Multiply and fill the earth, and rule.” God would not have said to them, “Multiply” unless they were an exact representation of His nature. God is not just after multiplication – unless it is an exact representation of His nature.
Our prayer now becomes a manifestation of SOMEONE! God is going to FILL ALL IN ALL!