2 And it shall come to pass in that day, saith Yahweh of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land.
Partial and typical cleansing of the land and causing unclean spirits to pass foreshadowed in the passing of the unclean spirits from madmen such as Legion - the infected unclean beasts (swine) were driven out of the land into the sea - Lk 8: 33
4 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied; neither shall they wear a rough garment to deceive:
For the nations conquered by the Lamb and those co-operating with him, who are called, and chosen, and faithful (Apoc. xvii. 14) are also enlightened by them; for
"the earth is lightened by the glory of the Rainbowed Angel" (xviii. 1).
And under the influence of this light,
"many peoples will go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of Yahweh, to the house of the Elohim of Jacob; and HE will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths; for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of Yahweh from Jerusalem"
(Isa. ii. 3).
Thus of a free and willing mind
"the Gentiles will come from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanities, and things in which there is no profit" (Jer. xvi. 19).
Such will be the judgment of posterity upon the spiritual wisdom of their ancestors. The creeds, articles, and confessions of faith which are now cherished with so much zeal, will be pronounced by a succeeding generation mere lies and unprofitable vanities. And so they are. They can teach no man the way of salvation; and therefore they are mere "vanities;" and they teach what is either not true, or they nullify the truth; so that they are neither more nor less than "lies."
... And such music will ascend as no concert of earth-borns has executed, and no inventor has composed before. This rainbowed multitude, in throng which no man can number, will sing what none besides themselves can sing -- the great song of their redemption and triumph (v. 9,10; xiv. 3; xv. 3,4). Victory crowns their labours, and they rest in a strong and peaceful reign of a thousand years (xx. 6).
6 And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds [ makkot] in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house [ bais ] of my friends.
The effect of this information upon the people is to cause a national lamentation.
7 Awake, O sword [Cherev], against My shepherd [Ro'eh], and against the man [Gever] that is My fellow [Amit (intimate companion, associate], saith Yahweh of hosts [Tzva'os]: smite the shepherd [Ro'eh], and the sheep [Tzon (sheep, flock) ] shall be scattered: and I will turn Mine hand upon the little ones [tzo'arim].
And Jesus saith unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered. - Mk 14: 27
The first point here is that Messiah is described as the fellow of Yahweh, the God of Israel; I ask upon what principle the Messiah looked for by Mr. Stern can be described as the fellow of God? The New Testament Messiah answers that description exactly; for we are told, in the 1st chapter of Heb., verse 2, that he is "the brightness of God's glory and the express image of His person" --
This result was by the very means that the Jews despise with so much scorn -- the operation of the Spirit upon a virgin of the house of David. Thus was begotten a son of David and son of God -- higher than the mere man Messiah of Jewish expectation. This reminds me that, last night, Mr. Stern made some sort of unfavourable comment upon an expression of mine about the beauty of the mystery. Now I did not attempt, as he supposed I did, to explain the mystery; for there are depths in divine truth that we can only know without being able to understand. And this is true in nature as well.
We know the sunlight, but we do not understand it. We know life in all creatures, but we do not understand it. There are thousands of things we know, but cannot understand in a profound sense, because the infinite is beyond the grasp of the human intellect. I do not attempt to define the mystery of God in Christ, but I pointed out what Mr. Stern failed to see -- that Jesus of Nazareth combines the two necessities created by the prophets.
The Messiah was to be the son of David; Jesus of Nazareth was so. He was to be God: Jesus of Nazareth was so in the sense of God being manifested in the flesh by the Spirit; whereas, the Messiah he upholds as a mere man, cannot be made to answer to these two things.
Was Jesus of Nazareth The Messiah?
THIRD NIGHT of DEBATE
Mr. Robert Roberts and Mr. Louis Stern, Oct. 1871
"Equal With God"
God says by Isaiah,
"To whom then will ye liken me or shall I be equal?" "There is no God besides me."
Yet in the Gospel narratives, the leaders of the Jews accuse Christ of making himself equal with God... Paul in Phil. 2:6 appears to sanction this view, saying Jesus
"thought it not robbery to be equal with God."
You ask and think there is something wrong with the translation here. It is not so... Literally rendered, word for word, English for Greek, these words would read, who in form of God being, not robbery he accounted (judged, thought or esteemed) the to be equal (or like) to God.
The ordinary translation is about as good a rendering into English as need be desired; and unquestionably gives the idea of the original. The only question is, in what sense did Christ "think it not a robbery."
Some critics think it ought to read "thought not of the robbery" or "meditated not the usurpation;" but this would take away the point of Paul's allusion. It would be no great incentive for us to humble ourselves to tell us that "Christ thought not of a robbery" or "meditated not a usurpation;" but to tell us that Christ who "thought it not robbery to be equal with God," "made himself of no reputation," is to give us a strong argument in favour of our own abasement, who are nothing.
The only question to be considered is, in what sense could it be said that Christ was equal with God? This is answered in John 5:18,
"He said that God was his Father, making himself equal with God."
When Christ's origin in the Spirit is realised, his equality with God in the New Testament sense is not difficult to perceive. The son of any high personage possesses a certain equality with his father, which is appreciated by those in a lower sphere whom he may visit, notwithstanding that his father is higher in rank than he.
In this way, Jesus, begotten of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: and the Father himself recognises the equality in calling Jesus "The man that is my fellow" (Zech. 13:7). The lesson of Paul's words lies here, that if Jesus, so high in station as to rank as the equal of God, was so humble as to make himself of no reputation, we have a great example of humility, and ought to "let this mind be in us which was also in Christ Jesus."
The Christadelphian, Jan 1898
8 And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith Yahweh, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein.
9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, Yahweh is my Elohim.
Who are those that escape among whom the "Wonder" is placed? The third part of those Jews residing in the land during the war which is consummated by the victory of Armageddon. Of these it is written,
"In all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off, and die; but the third part shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and I will refine them as silver is refined, and I will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, the Lord is my God."
Who is the wonder or Sign whom Yahweh will place in the midst of this refined third part? He who in prophecy says,
"I was a wonder to many; and of whom it is testified, "His name shall be called Wonderful."
Joshua the high priest, and his fellows, who were typical of the Branch and his associates are styled "men of wonder, " or sign (anshai mophaith); and the prophet says, in words applied by Paul to Jesus and his brethren,
"Behold, I and the children which God hath given me, are for Signs and Wonders in Israel from Yahweh of hosts, who dwelleth in Mount Zion."
The answer then to the question is, that the Lord Jesus is the Wonder, whom Yahweh will place in the midst of the third part; and that He with his refined third and the risen saints, will constitute the little stone-kingdom in Judea, which after a lapse of forty years will by war and conquest have become as a great mountain filling the whole earth.
Now, from this third part become as gold and silver well refined, the Wonderful will chose men whom he will send as messengers to the nations; as it is written,
"I will send those that escape of them to the nations."
Being sent they are consequently apostles; men, not only sent, but equipped for their work-in the highest sense, ambassadors of Jesus, the King of the Jews, to the nations. These messengers are not apostolized to take up their residence at the courts of kings like ordinary ambassadors; but, like Moses and Aaron, sent of Yahweh's angel to Israel in Egypt, to proclaim the fame of the king, their master, and the glory of his name; and to invite the aggregation of his people Israel into the wilderness, that they may be thence presented as an offering to Yahweh their God.
In doing this, they will announce the gospel of the everlasting kingdom of the Lord Jesus, which, as the little stone, will then be in its incipient state. And here I would direct the reader's attention to the symbolisation of these events. In the passage referred to below, he will find the symbolography. There this company of messengers, in Greek termed angels, is represented by a single angel or messenger flying in midheaven; that is, taking his course between the governments and the peoples.
He is not sent to "the Powers that be"; they are doomed to overthrow without remedy; but "to preach the everlasting gospel to them that dwell upon the earth, " which is apocalyptically opposed to "them that dwell in the heaven." Their proclamation is symbolized by "a loud voice; " for, unlike the preaching of the gospel now, which is "a still small voice" exciting but little attention, it "sounds through every nation, kindred, tongue, and people," becoming the greatest question of the age.
The nations are informed, that the Gospel of the Everlasting Age to Come, which thirty-nine centuries before had been announced to Abraham, is about to become an accomplished fact-that the hour had arrived to bless all the families of the earth in Abraham and his seed. They are not invited to inherit the kingdom with eternal life and glory; the time of that invitation passed away with the battle of Armageddon; but they are called upon to submit to the Stone kingdom as the inheritance of its king. (Psa ii. 8)
As it is written,
"Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment comes (elthe): and do homage to the Maker of heaven and earth."
To accept this invitation would be to renounce all allegiance to the powers that be, which the nations, even if disposed, will not be permitted to do by "the Beast and the kings of the earth," who to maintain their own ascendancy, prepare for war against Israel's king. The proclamation, however, will be believed by the Israelites scattered among the nations.
Their king will not permit them to remain there exposed to his judgments upon their oppressors. The proclamation, therefore, has no especial reference to them. "Go," says he,
"and proclaim these words towards the north (Meshech, Tubal, and Javan) and say, 'Return thou backsliding Israel, saith the Lord; I will not cause my anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, saith the Lord, and will not keep anger forever." (Jer iii. 12-18)
The result of the proclamation is that "they come together out of the land of the north;" for however unwilling the north will certainly be to give them up, and the south may desire to keep them back, (Isa xliii. 6,18,21) they will assuredly be separated from the nations with terrible effect upon them; and marching forty years through the wilderness of the peoples, "come to the land Yahweh hath given for an inheritance to their fathers"- yea, even "to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads." (Isa xxxv. 10)
These messengers of the third part, with Elijah the prophet at their head, are not merely preachers of the everlasting gospel; but endued with power to gather Israel together in the face of all the opposition that can be organized by the powers that be to prevent it; as it is written,
"They shall bring all your brethren as an offering unto the Lord, out of all nations:" not direct from the countries into Palestine, but circuitously, "by a way they knew not, and in paths they have not known." (Isa xlii. 16)
This will have been a stupendous work, but nothing is too hard for the Lord, reigning in Zion. The good tidings brought by him publishing peace and salvation to Israel, will have been effectually proclaimed by a powerful, if not a very numerous company of Israelites: and the resistance it will have occasioned on the part of the powers, will have caused him to
"make bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations:" for he comes not with persuading, but "with a strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him."
Mystery of the Covenant of the Holy Land Explained
Herald of the Kingdom and Age to Come, Nov 1855