Rabbi’s Reflections -Saturday, September 25, 2021
Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Sat 25 Sep 2021 19th of Tishrei, 5782 Parashat Suckot
Ex 34:4-26 Nu 29:23-28 Ez 38:18-39:16 Mt 17:1-9
Hope 17 – The End in View by David Harwood
I love God’s determination (His self-assessment).
God is not a man who lies, or a son of man who changes his mind! Does He speak and then not do it, or promise and not fulfill it? (Numbers 23:19 TLV)
He has spoken. He will make it happen. He has a goal toward which He is inexorably working. His purpose is clearly stated in the following passage.
But each in its own order: Messiah the firstfruits; then, at His coming, those who belong to Messiah; 24 then the end, when He hands over the kingdom to God the Father after He has destroyed all rule and all authority and power. 25 For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. 26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death.
27 For God has “put all things in subjection underneath His feet.” But when the psalmist says that “all” has been put in subjection, it is clear that this does not include God Himself, who put all things under Messiah.
28 Now when all things become subject to Him, then the Son Himself will also become subject to the One who put all things under Him, so that God may be all in all. (1 Corinthians 15:23–28 TLV)
Those Scriptures offer a synopsis of some stages towards the realization of the God of Israel’s objective. They are some of my favorite verses. They reveal where we all end up.
If you skimmed them, please reread them. As you do you’ll find that the Messiah’s warfare is not yet finished. It ends when He has destroyed every illegitimate malignant authority. This is something we can legitimately, joyfully anticipate. Yeshua will not fail. His enemies are doomed (and they’ve heard they are doomed, they just do not believe it).
Paul wrote that the Messiah must reign until His unassailable victory is fully revealed, saying, “The last enemy to be destroyed is Death.” Paul personified “Death”. Like a scorpion, it has a sting (1 Corinthians 15:56), but it’s going to be crushed. Paul wrote of Yeshua finally abolishing Death. The apostle prophesied that, within the context of the resurrection from the dead, Death will be taunted as if a hated, humiliated enemy:
1 Corinthians 15:54 But when this corruptible will have put on incorruptibility and this mortal will have put on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:
“Death is swallowed up in victory.” 55 “Where, O Death, is your victory? Where, O Death, is your sting?”
56 Now the sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the Torah. 57 But thanks be to God, who keeps giving us the victory through our Lord Yeshua the Messiah!
God gives us, and shall give us, the benefits of our Messiah’s victory. We are called to gratitude for every foretaste of our ultimate hope. The worst experiences possible in this age are connected to Death. Right now we have the beginnings of eternal life working within us. The sentence of deserved damnation has been overturned through the Messiah’s atoning work. God is on our side, therefore Death is His enemy. Death shall be destroyed.
Paul described the end as being the time when Yeshua hands over the kingdom to His Father at the end of His millennial reign. This is the culmination of the Messiah’s reign. The combination of Psalm 110 and the fulfillment of Psalm 8 (all things under Yeshua’s feet) will come to pass with a purpose: God shall be all in all.
Is this a good thing? Is it good for us? Who is this God who wants to fill everything with Himself? Who is this God who is determined to stamp out His enemies? Is He a micro-managing, controlling, narcissistic, obsessive compulsive, abusive person? Satan wants us to think so. But, let’s briefly examine a couple of verses that speak of our Father’s nature. This is a revelation of the results of our God’s Ruach ha-Kodesh’s influence.
17 Now the Lord is the Spirit and where the Ruach Adonai is, there is freedom. 18 But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory—just as from the Lord, who is the Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:17–18 TLV)
Is God a control-freak? No. The opposite is true. Where His Spirit actively dwells there is liberty. The degree of liberty is dependent upon the measure of His dynamic presence. When God is “all in all” there will be the fullness of freedom. We will be liberated. Nature (all of creation) will be liberated.
Right now, in this age, God is restrained. His will is not being done on earth as it is in heaven. That’s why we intercede (Matthew 6:10). He has active, rebellious, enemies. That is why we’re at war (Ephesians 6:12). Yeshua, God’s Son (and Champion), will reign. He will gradually consolidate His reign as Abba’s regent (Isaiah 9:7). He will expand the Kingdom’s rule until every single satanic adversary – and their influence – is subdued.
The result is that God will finally be liberated to be Himself!
How restrained is God? Look at the cross. Calvary is a picture of God’s relationship to His creation. Redemptive? Yes. Restrained? Definitely. What of God’s hoped-for liberating rule? It’s coming. It’s promised. That promised result will be similar to Yeshua’s resurrection.
The crucifixion informs us of the foundational method God uses to subdue His foes. Yeshua’s resurrection foretells God’s future reign.
We will see, and participate in, the process of our Messiah’s increasing reign. It shall be a privilege to co-labor with Him and glorious for us to behold. The finalizing of His victory is certain. The after-effect of that victory is going to be amazing. We have a wonderful future ahead of us. The Father shall receive the Kingdom from Yeshua. God will be all in all.
Who is this God who will be “all in all”?
I am in awe of God’s non-moral attributes. He is majestic in power, knowledge, and presence. At the same time, if He were not the way He is in His moral attributes, such power, knowledge, and presence would be nightmarish. As it is, God ultimately being “all in all,” is the promise of a dream come true.
He is the God who reveals Himself in holy-love. This love is so strong that it provoked the incarnation and the atonement the Word becoming flesh made possible.
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Messiah died for us (Romans 5:8 TLV)
He is filled with goodwill (grace) because of sincere love. This sincere love was demonstrated in a manner that a child can understand. Millions, if not billions, of children have sung “Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so.” That same love is going to be revealed in its fullness when He is “all in all”.
What will fill all in all? The Fruit of Spirit.
But the fruit of the Ruach is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control—against such things there is no law (Galatians 5:22–23 TLV)
God is emotionally whole. His personality and character are wonderful. He determined to righteously provide mercy. This is a remarkable verse revealing the mysteries of the nature of the coming Kingdom.
for the kingdom of God is not about eating and drinking, but righteousness and shalom and joy in the Ruach ha-Kodesh Romans 14:17 TLV)
This seems trite, but it isn’t. God is love. (1 John 4:8b TLV)
That proclamation may be so well known as to be a cliché, but please give it a moment of thought (meditation). God loves you so much that He is patient with you, kind to you, seeks your good, puts the best spin on your actions, and is patiently, kindly working for the fulfillment of Romans 8:28. When God is “all in all”, the reality of “all things working together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His good purposes” will be the universal experience of redeemed creation. Redeemed creation will be free of the pernicious wickedness that infests culture and the death infested material realm.
This is not a suffocating love. It is a liberating love. It describes the nature of the ages in which God will be “all in all”.
This is a hope worth nurturing.
This is worthy of our anticipation.
This is our covenant expectation.
Faithful is the One who calls you—and He will make it happen! (1 Thessalonians 5:24 TLV)