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The Plans of Jesus II

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The plan of Jesus was to have the Kingdom of God installed upon the Earth in the place of the Kingdom of Israel, which is why He never answered their question when they asked Him, “Lord, are You at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?” [Acts 1.6]  It is self evident, for it is reported that the only kingdom He spoke of after His resurrection was the Kingdom of God and not of Heaven.  Indeed, in His teachings before His death, He never spoke about the Kingdom of Israel, and He spoke of the Kingdom of God far more than the Kingdom of Heaven.

For that He needed to have more disciples raised up from believers, who would be enabled by the benefits that He had bequeathed them in His will.  That is why the last commandments from Jesus are to go and preach, and baptise and make disciples, teaching them to obey everything He had commanded… that is, uphold His will.  Believers who are able to do some of the things that He had been doing like healing the sick and driving out demons, and disciples who are able to do even greater things because He was going to the Father, and they had the Holy Spirit as their Counsellor.  The kingdom can only be established if the Holy Spirit were to dwell with and within the disciples, just as the Kingdom of Israel was established because God dwelled in their midst in the Tent of the Tabernacle from the beginning.  When the laws of Leviticus were observed, Israel was an impenetrable and formidable nation, but when the laws were cast aside, Israel was defeatable.

However, instead of having the law written on stone, Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to live among us and within us to remind us of what He had said and to tell us more than what He had said.  The Holy Spirit is to us what the Ark of the Covenant was to the Jews.  In Him is the power for the life of Christ, like the manna was in the ark.  In Him is the record of all the words spoken by Jesus, like the stone tablets were in the ark.  And in Him is the proof that Jesus is the Messiah, like the staff of Aaron which budded was the proof that he was the priest of God.  To receive the Holy Spirit is like Israel receiving the ark into their midst, and fellowshipping with Him was like Israel keeping the ark within their midst.

However, just as Israel only needed to receive the ark once into their midst and it stayed with them through all their travels as long as Israel observed the law, so likewise the Holy Spirit need only to be received once and He will remain as long as we continue to uphold the will of Jesus and carry out His plans.  The ark remained because the law was upheld, and it accompanied the Israelites as they carried out the plan of God to conquer Canaan.  The ark parted the Jordan for Israel, and as they carried it in the procession around Jericho, it destroyed the walls of Jericho as the people shouted in obedience to the command.  Likewise, the Holy Spirit remains in us as we uphold the will of Jesus, and He accompanies us, assisting us with His power, as we carry out the plan of Jesus.

The presence of the Holy Spirit is unmistakable.  It is not just a sense of ‘anointing’, but there are definite signs of His presence.  Where He is, the words of Jesus are taught for practising, and these are then confirmed with signs and power following.  The sick are healed and demons are driven out to begin with.  When the Holy Spirit is present, the truth of God and about God is always acknowledged… not facts, but truth… that all men are sinners, and repentance and forgiveness of sins are preached in Jesus’ Name.

Where the Holy Spirit is, that which is about to come according to God’s plan is spoken, and not what men would like to come.  The Holy Spirit would not speak of democracy as the answer to men’s political aspiration for freedom, but the reign of Christ… not the reign of the church, but the reign of Christ.  And there is always power for those who testify for Christ for the purpose of bringing Jesus back.

The church that ignores the Holy Spirit is like Israel without the ark – a dummy model of what it should be.  It is like the temple in Jesus’ time… filled with people who seemed to be doing what should be done, except there was no ARK in the Holy of Holies.  The most important piece of ‘furniture’ that really made the temple the Temple was missing.  Likewise, when the Holy Spirit is not received, the church is like the temple of Herod – looks the part but the most important item is missing.  And let me remind you that it was the temple without the ark that was filled with money changers and sellers of doves, which Jesus said had become a den of thieves and robbers.

In order to implement His plan for the Kingdom of God, the first thing Jesus said to the ten was, “Recieve the Holy Spirit.” [John 20.22]  Without Him, the plans of Jesus cannot be carried out, for the plans of Jesus can only be implemented and completed with miraculous power, not intellectual, financial, political or even military power.  That is why a church without miraculous power can never fulfil the plan of Jesus, and unless you have the Holy Spirit, there is no miraculous power.  The plan of Jesus to come back soon is unfulfilled 1,900 Gregorian years later.

Hr. Ed, manager of the Holy Spirit’s Workshop

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