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Religious: Study in depth, Revelation 12, verses 1- 17

                    Revelation 12: a study in depth. Verse One 

12:1 " And there appeared a great wonder(1) in heaven; a woman(2) clothed with the sun(3) and the moon(3) under her feet, and upon her head was a crown(4) of twelve stars(5)." 

  (1) WONDER: Gr. sēmeion, a sign, a mark, a token. From the Gr, root sēmainō, to give a sign, to signify, to indicate.
     a.) sēmeion is often translated in context as " a miracle " ( Luke 23:8, John 4:54 )
     b.) a further confirmation of the " open " or " revealed " nature of the book of Revelation.
    c.) in Rev 12:1 " sēmeion " is a sign pointing towards future events.

  (2) WOMAN: is a church ( Isa 54:5, Jer 6:2 representing Gods church ) 
And ( Jer. 3:20, Eze. 23:2-4, 2 Cor. 11:2, Eph 5:25-32, and Rev 17:1-3 representing an apostate church as a corrupt woman. ) 
    a.) in this reference the Woman represents Gods church both OT and NT as she transitions from OT ( Pre birth of Jesus ), past the birth and resurrection until the return of Jesus ( NT Church. ) within this single prophetic revelation twelve. One must therefor take great care to prove that a " church " thought to represent this WOMAN today, does in fact have the attributes of righteousness. Thankfully God, in his wisdom foreknew we'd earnestly seek to know who this WOMAN/ church is in our time and He inspired John to write Rev. 12:17 as a guide by which we might properly apply scripture to know the characteristics of His only church today. This WOMAN must therefor have TWO characteristics 1). She must have the " testimony of Jesus Christ " ( Rev 19:10 tells us exactly what the testimony of Jesus Christ is ) and 2.) she must " keep the commandments of God ". Any church that fails to have either of these two attributes, can NOT be this woman as described in scripture.

  (3) " Clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet," Her the church is examples the brightness of Jesus ( resurrected ), and God himself as they appear to men throughout the OT and NT when they appear to men in person. 
    a.) God is Light, and the sun and moon represent those lights of the earth. The moon under her feet has been suggested to encompass the OT sanctuary system ( and those laws that applied to the sacrificial system of types ) that was overshadowed and replaced with a better thing ( the sun being an prophetic image of;  the Son of righteousness, Jesus Christ ) in the NT. thusly the NEW is worn as a garment but the OLD is the foundations overshadowed by the greater light.

  (4) CROWN: Gr. stephanos, a victors garland ( crown )( see MAtt. 27:29, Rev 2:10 ) as in a crown one wins for winning a foot race ( this imagery would have had profound and clear understanding in the early church as the athletic games of the Greeks were widely known and enjoyed throughout all of the known world at that time, the winner of each event was given a " woven garland " to indicate their triumph ).
    a.) this CROWN is NOT diadēma, a kingly crown.

   (5) Twelve Stars: commentators apply these stars to either the twelve apostles or the twelve patriarchs OT, I favor including both as both are equal in importance in their times to Gods church. The latter does not exist without the former, and all are not abiding in Jesus without the latter, they must it seem be seen in the context of the purpose that God has for them and not through the eyes of bias. Undoubtedly the emphasis is upon the latter due to the context of REV 12, but the former is also interwoven into the NT church ( we are Israel, grafted into the vine and into the seed of Abraham by grace , see Romans Chapters 8-11).  

      
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       Studying Scripture in depth: Revelation 12 , verse 2

12:2 " And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered."

The " she " is an obvious reference to the " woman " who is a church(1) in verse one. And this church is " with child ", that child being none other than Jesus ( ee-ay-sooce , Strong's Gr. 2424 ) the long awaited and anticipated messiah of the nation of Israel and the whole earth. Please note with me that we are introduced to the concept of this "woman/ church " at the time Jesus(2) is to be born into the world. 

travailing: Gr. ( Strong's 5605 ) ōdinō, o-dee'-no; from ( 5604 )( ōdin, o-deen : a pang or throe, espec. Of childbirth:- pain, sorrow, travail. ) ; to experience the pains of parturition ( literal or figurative ) :- travail in birth.
Obviously, the reference to birth pains is used in a figurative sense here, as the "woman/ church " is not a individual, but is a image of Gods holy church both prior too and after the birth of our redeemer Jesus Christ.
The "Woman/ Church was first given to the nation of Israel, for they were to make disciples of the world proclaiming God in all they did, missionaries and evangelists(3). Yet, Israel the physical nation failed, firstly to be missionaries, secondly to look for salvation as being for their own selves as well as others. They considered themselves saved by virtue of ancestry ( Abraham is our father (4)) not realizing that it was Abrahams FAITH (5) that was accounted to him as righteous. They saw the DNA, God sees the heart, lest we also make such error in presumption.

The question then remains, and id love to hear your thoughts; at what point did the Church go from the physical Israel into those who by faith become the spiritual Israel , what scriptures support your beliefs ( please list them, as well as what bible you used to quote from so we all can see ).

God Bless and give glory to Him who is able to save, Jesus Christ.
Stēkō Parrēsia 

(1) see Revelation 12: a study in depth posted 5/26/2013 Here at the DP.
(2) some see Isa. 7:14 as a reference. For " travailing woman " read Isa.   .   . . 26:17,66:7,8. 
(3) Gen. 12:3, Ex. 19:4-6, Isa. 40-55. 
(4) John 8:39
(5) for how FAITH is exampled and encouraged see Hebrews Chapters 11 & 12 

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6/13------- Rev. 1:16-17

A study in detail: Revelation 1:16

King James: " and he had in his right hand seven stars; and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance { was } as the sun shineth in his strength. " 

InterLinear: " and having in the right of Him hand stars seven, and out of the mouth of Him a sword two mouthed sharp proceeding, and the face of Him as the sun shines in the power of it. "

" The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches " Rev. 1:20 . 
For the imagery of the word of God ( Jesus ) being sharper than a sword see Heb. 4:12

{ * Biblical Scripture must be the tool used in interpreting biblical scripture, for it always does provide complete revelation and understanding within itself. No external source, that is of itself considered ( by the world ) a word from a god should be used in the interpretation of biblical scripture: do not seek to compare fine Gold with dross. 

Many erstwhile, but problematic teachings upon this Book ( Revelations ) have gone out into the world as a result of improper, unstudied, and misinterpreted theories. These teach various errors, that serve to lead Gods people astray and are not the work of those who are workmen in the wisdom of God.

Here , John continues to attempt to describe from verse 1:13, describing that it is Jesus Himself who is the one who controls and guides the remnant churches through the span of history ( seven stars ). That it is Jesus Himself, whom is still the " Word "  which is the " sharp two edged sword " that proceeds out of His mouth. It is interesting to here note that the two edged sword was designed so that it could cut the adversary on both the outgoing and returning swing: the word of God is such a weapon.  John goes on to complete His description of Jesus saying that His countenance was as radiant as the noonday sun: glowing with His, the glory of God so as to be almost to difficult ( and for all but those who are Jesus's it shall be ) to gaze upon due to the magnificent brightness.

Stars: Strong's ( 792 ) astēr, as-tare'; prob. from the base of [ 4766 stroo, to strew, to spread ] ; a star ( as strewn over the sky ), lit. or fig.:- a star

Sharp: Strong's ( 3691 ) oxus, ox-oos'; prob. akin to the base of [ 188 akē: a point ], keen, by anal. rapid:- sharp, swift.

Twoedged: Strong's ( 1366 ) distomos, dis'-tom-os; from [ 1364 dis " twice " and from 4750 stoma " the mouth " " front edge of a weapon " ], double-edged:- with two edges, two-edged.

Countenance: Strong's ( 3799 ) opsis, op'-sis; from [ 3700 optomai " to gaze " ], prop. sight ( the act ) i.e., ( by impl. ) the visage, an extern. show:- appearance, countenance, face.

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A study in detail: Revelation 1:17

King James: "  and when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he lay his right hand upon me, saying unto me, fear not; I am the first and the last: 

InterLinear: " and when I saw Him, I fell at the feet of Him as dead, and He place the right of Him hand on me, saying to me, Not fear, I am the First and the Last, " 

{* John is so overwhelmed by the vision that in it, his strength fails him and he falls as if dead at the feet of Jesus. Since John then write that Jesus places His right hand upon John, it is obvious that John was not dead but that he was without strength to rise until comforted by Jesus. 

***This is also a biblical sign of someone who is having a true vision from God ( see Eze. 1:28, 3:23; Dan. 8:17, 10:7-10; Acts 9:4 ). Those who DO NOT display this characteristic as well as the other characteristics from scripture that describe being " in vision "; then they are false prophets and the vision they describe is also false or if it come to pass, it was yet from the adversary and not of God.***

Note that Jesus's first concern is to cause John to be comforted " fear not " being the first words spoken. Jesus then goes on to state His authority, that is to make clear whom He is " the First and the Last ( see Isa. 44:6 ), i.e., GOD; so that all He is about to reveal will be heeded as being given by He who has supreme authority and credibility. 

Dead: Strong's ( 3498 ) nekros, nek-ros'; from an appr. primary " nekus " ( a corpse ); dead ( lit. or fig. Also as a noun ) :- dead.

Fear: Strong's ( 5399 ) phobeo, fob-eh'-o; from [ 5401 phobos, " alarm " ]; to frighten, i.e., ( pass. ) to be alarmed; by anal. to be in awe of, i.e., revere:- be (+ sore ) afraid, fear ( exceedingly ), reverence. 

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Revelation 1:14-15

A bit late today.....

A study in detail: Revelation 1:14

King James: " His head and { His } hairs { were } white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes { were } as a flame of fire; " 

InterLinear: " the And head of Him, and the hairs white as wool white, as snow, and the eyes of Him as a flame of fire, " 

* John sees Jesus and struggles to describe Him in that he first says " white as wool " and the thinking of a whiter substance " snow ", John adds it to the description to be more accurate if he can be. John also accurately paints for us an image of the intensity of Jesus's eyes, " a flame of fire " they are, so intensely does Jesus consider what is before Him.

White: Strong's ( 3022 ) leukos, lyoo-kos'; from lukē, ( light ); white :- the color white.

Wool: Strong's ( 2053 ) erion, er'-ee-on; of obscure aff.; wool :- wool.

Snow: Strong's ( 5510 ) chion, khee-one'; perh. akin to the base of [ 5490 psuchē " spirit " and 5465 chalaō " to lower " or 5494 chēimōn to pour through the idea of weather ( as descending or empty ); snow:- snow.

Flame: Strong's ( 5395 ) phlox, flox; from a primary phlegō, ( to " flash " or " flame " ); a blaze:- flame (-ing ). 

Fire: Strong's ( 4442 ) pur, poor; a primary word " fire " ( lit. or fig., spec. " lightning"):- fiery, fire.

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A study in detail: Revelation 1:15

King James: " and his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters." 

InterLinear: " and the feet of Him like burnished metal as in a furnace having been fired, and the voice of Him as a sound of waters many, " 

* John describes our Lords feet as being " like a fire burnished metal ", whether John refers to metals molten state of the bright white glow of a well heated rod of metal. The mental image is similar in either case; a bright red/ yellow/ WHITE HOT glowing that has an " inner " intensity to it. John describes His voice as being of " many waters "; throughout scripture," waters and sea(s) as used to describe " nations tribes and tongues ". Therefor I believe that John alludes to the fact that Jesus speaks to all nations in their relative languages ( many waters ) and it is also likely that John here indicates that Jesus represents all people's. For as Jesus is our " King of kings ", he is the legal " spokesman " for all of humanity, in essence representing universally all of mankind.

Metal: Strong's ( 5474 ) Chalkolibanon, khal-kol-ib'-an-on; neut. of a compound of [ 5475 chalkos " brass " and 3030 libanos " incense itself " ( in the impl. mean of whiteness or brilliancy ), burnished copper, an alloy of copper ( or gold ) and silver having a brilliant luster:- fine brass.

Waters : Strong's ( 5204 ) hudōr, hudatos, hoo'-dat- os; act. from the base of [ 5205 huetos " to rain " ]; water ( as if rainy ), lit. or fig.:- water. 

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Verses 12-13......

A study in detail: Revelation 1:12

King James: " and I turned to see the voice that spake to me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks."

InterLinear: " and I turned to see the voice which spoke to me. And having turned I saw seven lampstands of gold." 

Turned: Strong's ( 1994 ) epistrepho, ep-ee-stref'-o; from [ 1909 epi; a superimposition ( of time, place, order, etc.) and 4762 strepho; to twist, i.e., to turn ] 
To revert ( lit. or fig. or mor.) :- come ( go ) again, convert,  ( re-) turn ( about, again ).

See: Strong's ( 991 ) blepo; to look at, behold.

Voice: Strong's ( 5456 ) phōnē, fo-nay'; prob. akin to [ 5316 phainō; to lighten ] through the idea os disclosure; a tone ( articulate, bestial or artif. ) by impl. an address ( for any purpose ), saying or language :- noise, sound, voice.

Lampstands: Strong's ( 3087 ) luchnia, lookh-née'-ah; from [ 3088 luchnos, a portable lamp, light ]; a lamp-stand ( lit. or fig. ) :- candlestick *
{ * the image of the menorah should come to the readers mind here, for these candlesticks are the image most readily associated with God through the ( type ) sanctuary service of Israel which pointed towards the salvation message of the ( anti-type ) messiah, Jesus Christ. These menorah were of beaten and artfully crafted gold, and represented " light " in more than just their physical aspect of casting it by nature of their being candles/ oil lamps. " Light ", is used to describe an aspect of the very nature of God ( John 1:5, psalm 36:9, James 1:17 ....... ) . " light " is also frequently associated with true wisdom and knowledge. In the sanctuary typology of Jesus's salvation ministry, these candlesticks represent the word of God as given by Devine inspection to men, and more specifically to the very Word of God who was and is Jesus Himself both from forever before and during His walk as man here on in and now as man sitting in judgement in the most Holy Place in the heavenly temple ( of which the earthly was a mere shadow and a typology of as well: see Hebrews and Rev. For scripture showing Jesus's ministry in the Heavenly sanctuary.
In verse 1:20, these candlesticks are declared to represent the seven churches, and by extension they represent the entire remnant church Herself. They are described as " golden " indicating that throughout time and history, Gods refining of men's character through the ministry of the Holy Spirit will continue producing men who are " abiding in Christ Jesus " who are by faith, fully servants of GOD and thusly worthy of being called " His Church ". Jesus is seen in verses 13-18 " walking among " these candlesticks, therefore one can safely know that throughout time and history, Christ Himself will be with those who are by Faith His remnant Church.
A lengthy and intense discussion must at some time be given and learned upon the very characteristics of those who are considered " His Church " by Jesus. Make no mistakes about it, for we are to test the spirits, and by their fruit we shall know them. If a church lays claim to being Gods only church , then they must either meet the requirements for sanctified personal relations in Jesus as well as to carry the message ( and ONLY the scripture message ) to every nation, tribe and tongue and to every corner of this earth. Many claim to be, but only ONE can be...... Let those who diligently seek first the Kingdom of God know, all else will be added unto thee in righteousness; by wisdom, and faithful study of scripture you will know truth from lies and when it's time you will, by following the call of the Spirit of God, leave where your bottom presently resides in a church and come into Gods Remnant church to be " fit " for His " ministry " as God has given severely as He will.
The only question remaining is; can you discern what is of God and what is of men? If not, then why not? And if so, then by what way is your bias unheard ?

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 A study in detail: Revelation 1:13 

King James; " and in the midst of the seven candlesticks { one } like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. "

InterLinear; " and in { the } midst of the seven lampstands, { one } like { the } Son of man, having been clothed to { the } feet, and having been girdled with at the breasts a girdle of gold. " 

" Son of man " ; Jesus ( psalms 80:17, Daniel 7:13, and 43 times in the NT ) is described in such a way, as to fulfill prophecy; and as to properly show that only a man could give his life ( ONCE for all men ) for the remission of the sins of men, and only a SINLESS man could make such an unselfish self choice as to do so.

Paps: Strong's ( 3149 ) mastos, mas-tos'; from the base of [ 3145 massaomai ] ; a ( prop. female ) breast ( as if kneaded up ):- pap. {  * , obviously scripture does not intend the reader to believe that Jesus has feminine " paps "; it is thus written to illustrate where the " golden girdle " was relative to what John saw the "Son of man" wearing as he observed Him walking amongst the lampstands.

I find it comforting to realize that I've a fellow man sitting upon the throne of judgement who just also happens to be my defender and my surety. The facts are that this Jesus always was at the Fathers side from forever, and by becoming man Jesus ( and the Father and the Spirit ) took upon themselves not only our physical nature; they suffered in separation for three days what they had NEVER known before, a time when they were not alway together. To me, this seems far above my ability to comprehend, what emotion, and God is an emotional being, must have been felt, what love is this to be willing to feel this for the sake of ME ? 
By faith I lay claim to every promise of God, and all the promises of God are YES in Christ Jesus and AMEN. For such a love as that of God for me, I will gladly trade away all my precious dust.

  

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

A new day, next verse.

A study in detail: Revelation 1-11

King James: " saying, I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last: and, what thou seest, write in a book, and send { it } unto the seven churches which are in Asia ; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea. "

InterLinear: " I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last;  and, what you see write in a roll, and send it to the seven churches in Asia, to Ephesus, and to Smyrna, and to Pergamos, and to Thyatira, and to Sardis, and to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea. " 

Book: biblion, a roll or a scroll ; what would today be produced in a book, was in those day written on a large sheet of a writing surface ( papyrus, animal skin...) and then affixed to a wooden dowel and " rolled around it creating a scroll.
{* inks used throughout history can be accurately dated due to the contents used in creating the ink. Geographical local, politics, and other factors all came into play in the creation contents of inks, thusly inks are readily identifiable to the time peroid and location of inks..... Ink dating techniques were used in determining the date(s) of the dead sea scrolls authorship. } 

{* commentary mine, unless quotation/ ref. added } 

* The fact that the number seven is used to represent these churches is significant, and can not be overlooked. As there were at least two " other " ( Colossae, and Heirapolis, Col. 1:2, 4:13 ) Christian churches in Asia at the time Revelations was written, one can not say it was written to include all the known churches.
Additionally Revelation uses the number seven at least 14 additional times ( spirits, candlesticks, stars, lamps of fire, seals, horns and eyes of the lamb, angels and trumpets, thunders, dragons heads and crowns, beasts heads, angels and vials, beasts heads are kings and mountains. Therefor any reference of the number seven must be taken in a symbolic sense, in that it indicates perfectness or completion.
" as applied to the seven churches, then, this number may be expected to have a specific purpose... Consequently it is reasonable to conclude the the Lord chose the seven churches here named because they were typical of the condition of the church as a whole- both in apostolic times and throughout the Christian Era." SDAEC , pg. 737
I intend to discuss at length how these letters speak to Church ERAs throughout time when discussing each particular city and it's letter. But have already ( Rev. 1:8 ) listed a brief description table previously in this study for future reference.

 

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Revelation Verses 9. & 10

A study in detail: Revelation 1:9

King James : " I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience go Jesus Christ, was in the island called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ." 

InterLinear : " I, John, the even brother of you, and co-sharer in the affliction and in the kingdom and in the patience of Jesus Christ, came to be in the island being called Patmos, for the word of God and because of the witness of Jesus Christ. " 

{ * in verse 9 John gives us the reason he was on the island of Patmos: it was because of his spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ that the Roman Emperor Domitian exiled him, thinking to silence John. 2000 years later we personally see how ineffective are the ways of men in silencing the voice and purpose of God. } 

Brother: Strong's ( 80) adelphos, ad-el-fos'; " from 1 " ( as a connective particle ) and delphus ( the womb ); a brother ( lit. or fig.) near or remote { much like 1 }:- brother
{ note mine } { * here John could be claiming our as christian " common " " rebirth in Jesus Christ " as being the reasons why he is our brother. John sees that we are family in Jesus. } 

" Companion in tribulation " 
Strong's ( 4791 ) and ( 2347 ) 
( 4791) sugkoinonos, soong-koy-no-nos'; a co-participant:- companion, partake (-r, -r with)
( 2347 ) thlipsis, thlip'-sis; pressure ( lit. or fig.):- afflicted (-tion ), anguish, burdened, persecution, tribulation, trouble .
{ * note mine } { John having been exiled, had been as were ALL those who called Jesus their savior severely persecuted under Nero ( Diocletian ). Put to death, hounded, hunted and persecuted throughout the entirety of the Roman Pagan Empire. John truly was a " companion in the tribulations " of his " brethren " in Jesus Christ during his long life. John is thought to have been in his Nineties when on Patmos, he was 15-18 when he was called by Jesus into discipleship in the company of those who walked physically with Jesus himself .

" Kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ"

Kingdom: Strong's ( 932 ) basileia, bas-il-i'-ah; prop. " royalty , i.e., ( abstr.) rule.

Patience: Strong's ( 5281 ) hupomone, hoop-om-on-ay'; " cheerful ( or hopeful ) endurance, consistency ":- enduring, patience, patient continuance ( waiting ) 

{* note mine } { here John is saying that he is in, or rather " ruled by Jesus " and is thusly already in Jesus's kingdom. John also clearly states the attitude of any such a person within that kingdom of Jesus while they are upon this earth, a " hopeful awaiting ", "  a joyous expectation ". In that John, and all Christians are to endure the persecutions ( temptations, troubles, strife ) of this life with our focus being upon Jesus and our going home into His kingdom with and attitude of gratitude. } 

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A study in detail: Revelation 1:10

King James: " I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, "

InterLinear: " I came to be in { the } Spirit on the { of } the Lord day, and I heard behind me a great voice, as a trumpet, " 

{* note mine } { John here could be indicating that he was meditating upon the word of God or in prayer, in a mental state that was focused upon God and Gods word and teachings. He was doing this upon the " Lord's day ", the seventh day Sabbath rest that all Christians kept ( saving the pagan cities of Alexandria Egypt and Rome ) for centuries after the resurrection of Jesus. The seventh day sabbath is a day upon which were are to " enter his rest ", or to contemplate the " rest " given to men by God through Jesus. This " rest " encompasses all of creation, Salvation and through faith sanctification as well; Jesus, the Spirit and the Father did and do all the work of all of these without the help of men; we are to trust ( have faith ) and believe, that is our part. Since I keep Gods sabbath myself, I am intimately familiar with being " in the spirit on the Lord's day " and how upon the seventh day, access to God for fellowship is a promise from God to men. That access is NOT given in such a promise if you observe any other day as being gods sabbath.
I'd be more than happy to discuss at length the PROPER CONTEXT of every misused scripture that supposedly supports Sundays being the true day of christian worship: The Seventh Day Sabbath is eternal and according to Ez. Is observed in the Heavens forever: how is it then that men are so easily deceived ? 
The Roman Church/ Political State changed the Sabbath day for several worldly reasons, and they themselves say " there is no scriptural reason or authority for the change. And that they did so based upon their own authority and only upon their own authority". So then , whom do you serve, God who says keep His Seventh day, or man who blasphemes God ( seeks to change time and law, see Daniel 7 and Revelation 13 ) by changing Gods law based upon bigotry, hate, and controlling others ? 
Men might say that I " hate " the Roman Church/ Political State, and they'd be incorrect. But I will stand with God, for He is able to make me stand; the Roman Church/ Political State has the " seat, power, and great authority " given to it by Lucifer and it is the " Little Horn " of Daniel 7 and the " Beast, Babylon, and the Harlot " of Revelation. Prophecy confirms this, EVERY great man of the reformation
Wycliffe, Huss, Tyndall, Luther, Calvin, Williams, Miller, every last one of these men of God has left us IN QUOTED WRITINGS available on the web, right now, testimony agreeing that the " Roman Church/ State is, was, and shall forever be the anti-Christ power spoken of in the Prophecy in Revelation. How is it then, if you attend a church founded upon these men's teachings that you do not know this, could it because your church has a nefarious reason ( as in they are her " daughters now? ) for hiding this immutable fact from your eyes? 
When God says " come out of her my people ", he is speaking to every Spirit filled Christian who is at present filling a pew in ANY of these apostate church's that serve the Roman church/ State beast controlled by Satan himself. Those church's are to many to list, there is however only ONE remnant church of Jesus: go into her my people, "abide in Jesus ". 
Who then is the remnant church? Must you even ask? Does not your heart already answer this based solely upon my words? Does not the Spirit tell you, and does not your flesh wail at the prospect, is not your mind of men even now thinking lies, reasons and deceptions such as " legalism, false prophet, meat haters.................... And a thousand other lies " to prevent your being free from the system whose praise and worship goes to Lucifer though it's pew sitters think to cast it to God. For if you pray before an idol, do not think that such praise, no matter your intent, goes to God who consider such behaviors an abomination before Him.
Lucifer, by deception has taken many captive who even now think they are at liberty, are you in bondage unknowingly? This is a question that all men should consistently seek knowledge and truth about, I think.
Pray that God open the eyes of your understanding, that He might by his own supernatural power show you if you are: but do so in your minds ( silent prayer ) that the enemy who hears can not hear your prayer that he might send a deception to deceive you yet again. 
Put a " fleece " ( see Gideon's example ) before God, and have faith in the fact that he " is not lax as men count laxness, but is long suffering, not willing for anyone to perish, but that all might come to repentance through Jesus Christ " and " that God, who will make us to stand, for He is able to make us to stand before Him in judgement ".  The Father wants you to know the truth as written in His word, it is there, seek it like a " workman ", and God will answer your prayer, I am confidant in this having myself already by faith done this very prayer and having received by the Spirit the very answer I sought as confirmation of the good and perfect will of Almighty God in this matter. It then requires action, for faith without works is dead. 
Our first action is believing by faith our prayer will be answered.
Our second action is by faith knowing if the answer scripturally meets the requirements to have been " from God ".
Our third action is either denying a deception from Lucifer through Faith reliance upon Jesus as our Strong Tower: or it is our obedient faith walking in Jesus that we take as a result of God showing us what His answer was and our doing so.
Such faith is the faith shown by Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Joseph, David, Solomon, Rehab, and the lame and the blind. It is such faith, that God counts as righteousness, have you such faith? For without faith such as this, it is impossible to please God.
 

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

My simple answer...

is merely drawn from the text and references you have provided, which I find to be abundantly adequate.

The verse offers a poetic depiction of Judaism just before giving birth to Christianity.

To specifically address your detail "at what point did the Church go from..." I am a bit less sure. Was there a specific "point"? Or perhaps it may be less ambiguous to ask "at what point did the Church begin to go from...". Even then, I think you are alluding to a long term process of which finding a "point" is actually finding a high point in which this process may have been evident. At best you may be seeking the highest point among high points, perhaps a "tipping point". Perhaps it was upon the destruction of the second temple (70 A.D.). Perhaps it was upon the death of Jesus. Perhaps it was upon the establishment of the first physical church at Glastonbury. Perhaps Constantine hijacked the tipping point. Perhaps it has not yet been reached. Assuming the premise of the question itself is legitimate, that there was a shift from a "physical" Israel to a "spiritual" Israel [analogous to the shift from Old to New testament principles], it is an interesting question. I'm a bit shaky though, from the get-go, with the notion of a previously "physical" Israel as I just finished an extended diatribe with another DPer regarding the unscientific reference to modern day Poland as physical. I held true that Poland is merely a state of mind. As it stands, I am fresh to consistently adhere to my notion of ancient Israel or for that matter ancient Persia, Greece, modern day Israel or Minnesota, any social, political, or religious states, as merely states of mind. So, at what point did Israel embrace a new, more expansive approach? A point? Hmm, I dunno? :D
What's yours? ;D

Well, as you can probably surmise

Im a " it is written, thus it is " kind of guy.
So looking at the a time for the cessation of the " unique and individual Religious Israel " one must take several factors into account.
1.) what old testiment prophecies deal with this subject
2.) what do new testament scriptures say about this subject.

The clearest old testament prophecy on the coming of the messiah, is Daniel 9:24-27. We've historical, archeological proofs that confirm that the Media/ Persian of Babylon, king " Artexerxies " gave an order to the children of Isreal in Babylonian captivity to " rebuild the roads and walls of Jerusalam ": a stone tablet written in Media/Persian confirms and describes this kings decree from 457 BC.

Artaxerxes I of Persia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artaxerxes_I_of_Persia
Succession to the throne · Relations with Greece · Portrayal in the Book ...
A copy of this decree may be found in . Ezra thereby ... who had permitted Jews held captive in Babylon to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the Temple of Solomon.

Daniels prophecy gives a specific time line as to when exactly in years, the messiah will be, but is cut off, i.e., messiah had a 7 year period, but was cut off at 3.5 years. From the date of the decree to rebuil untill Daniels messiah shows up is exactly the year Jesus was baptized in the Jordan by John the Baptist, and 3.5 years later Jesus was crucified.
I establish this base because Jesus himself said of Israel " your house is left unto you desolate " and in several places the word says ( Jesus is the Word BTW ) " I will call you ( Israel ) no more my people, and will call those who were not my people, my people ". Tharefore, it was foretold by God that both the religious/ spiritual nation and the Physical/ political nation of Israel would be no more.

The end of Daniels prophecy was 34 ad., the year Stephen was stoned and Saul of Tarsus was transformed into Paul; the Gospel of Jesus Christ had been almost exclusively to the Jews for those 3.5 years after Jesus's death, but now it went to the Gentiles who wholeheartly embraced it.
So here we can see the separation between the " spiritual Israel " i.e., her religious duties in God and her Physical nature or political. In 34 ad She lost her unique place in God as the sole evangelizers of his gospel of salvation. It was the same gospel throughout the OT, they missed it, and so do we if we fail to see the type of Jesus the sanctuary service was....it pointed to Jesus, all the OT is pointing out Jesus.
In 70 ad Political Israel ceased to exist, and has not truly been reunited ever since.
Two different things in Gods eyes , His gospel ( His kingdom ) and political power ( mans kingdom ). We error because we assume they are one in the same, God is not constrained by how we think, and oft time does the direct opposite of our " normals " to show that only His wisdom counts.

Therefore, I believe it is important to note that how God declares something is seldom how men see it. Gods primary purpose through Israel was to spead the news that a savior for everyone was coming. God took that from them and now it belongs to all who ARE IN Jesus Christ, Jew or Gentile. By faith we are saved, by faith like Abraham's we are changed and counted righteous in Jesus, a new Spiritual " Israel " through the only righteous Isralie ever, Jesus himself. We are grafted into the vine, but it's the vine that sustains, and not the branches.

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

This Biblical picture was revealed at Mexico City...

as Our Lady of Guadalupe in the early 1500's. Juan Diego, a poor Mexican peasant was walking in the winter when Mary, the Mother of God appeared to him. He told the Bishop about the apparition, and the Bishop told him to return to the site, and ask for a sign from the apparition so that it could be verified and was not a hoax. Jaun went back, and the Blessed Mother gave him flowers and roses not native to Mexico, in the middle of December. He put the flowers in his tilma, his cloak, and when he opened it to show the Bishop the flowers, the image of the Woman Clothed with the Sun appeared, and has miraculously survived for the last 500 years. By the way, peasant tilmas were not made of anything that could survive the test of time like this cloak has. For more information on this miraculous event, check out the link below. This particular miracle lead to the conversion of millions of the Aztec Indians to the Christian faith.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Our_Lady_of_Guadalupe

Well sir,

Since Mary is still in the ground, as in not risen yet. I'm thinking that scripture says its impossible that Mary is the one whom people are seeing.
There is only one instance of anyone being raised from the grave after the crucifixion of Jesus, when a unknown and unamed number of " righteous " we're raised up in the area of Jerusalem ( see the book of Acts ). Since Mary was alive then, she is NOT one of these.
Scripture also says that " at a shout, and a trumpet, the dead in Christ shall rise first , then ( as in; straight off the very next second ) those of us who are alive shall be changed in a twinkling, from mortal to immortal, and rise with the clouds ( angels are in scripture described as clouds..." a great cloud of witness's ") to meet Jesus in the air...." 2 Timothy. Therefore, ALL those who have gone to their rest, i.e., dead, ( 53 verses in scripture detail the state, or condition of this rest, death , as " they think nothing, know nothing , do nothing, they are as if " asleep: deeply, undreaming ".) like Mary herself is asleep now, and is NOT in heaven but she WILL BE when Jesus soon returns as it is written in scripture.
The Marian prophecies are a fable, concocted by men in order to deceive other men, a tool of Satan in deception.

Which is why being rooted and grounded in understanding based soley upon the written word of God, extemporaneous of Gnosticism ( Thomas Aquaimus's teachings ( perqatory, hell, immortality of the soul, indulgences....etc.) as well as Oregins teachings collected in the " Hexalptua " by Euseabues, who penned the Douay/ Rheims in 364 ad at Constentines order for Constintines Pagan/ Christian combined church State in Rome. , see Codex Esdras B , or Latin Vulgate texts . ) is imparitive for salvational wisdom and truth.

Being as I was raised Catholic, I'm fully aware of what she taught me then ( past confirmation ) compared to what she says in her own words as compared against the written word of God.
Please ( to save yourself an embarrassing, humbling, and truth filled experience at your expense ) don't go to " we gave you the bible ", because you did NO SUCH THING, in fact the Roman Church KILLED millions to keep the bible OUT of the hands of everyday people for 1260 years, including such " Christ like " behaviors such as " smashing babies against rocks ( Valdois Persecutions ) Furthermore, the Protest-ant bible, the King James is derived from the " Syriac texts ", or original texts from Asia Minor, you know, the geographic heart of the first true church in Jesus and is not derived from the " Esdras B " or Gnostic, hermeneutical ( from Alexandria Egypt and Rome ONLY ) texts of your church.
History, has shown how you, and those like you will respond to my post. So harp your denials all in unison, call your fellows together, as if the sheer volume will drown God out: all the weight of your denials shall never erase the truth contained in scripture, and your words shall haunt you before His White Throne before New Jerusalems open gates which you can not enter unless you too deny men and follow only Jesus, who is the Written Word made man, who died ONCE FOR ALL, for the remission of sin, who now sits a man upon the throne of God forever. I pray that no matter the weight of words pressing against you now, that you hear His Spirit and falling on your knees seek to please Him and only Him, respecting not men or their making merchandise of you in Gods name to suit their self centered power and control issues.
Being a biblical historian and transcriber myself I am extremely well versed upon the FACTS of how the modern bibles came into being, don't think for one second to perpetuate the " Roman Church/ State parroted talking points " against me lightly. For if God be willing, then I am able to stand against the VERY BEST your church can offer in defense of her lies and manipulations, for there is His Word Written and everything else is of men to be tested against that which is Written to see if it is of God or if it be of Satan.
I learned, much to my anguish, pain, hurt feelings, and anger that the church of my youth had told me great lies, had deceived me to pick my pocket clean of my wealth in spiritual and financial things, to enslave me under a yoke not given to me or men by God. I forgive them, because to be forgiven myself for my sin, I must first forgive those who trespass against me....the Catholic Chirch trespassed, trespasses and continues to tresspas, I continue to forgive. But she will see my fingers all pointing, hear my words based upon scripture alone and by the faith and Grace from God through Jesus daily focused upon them; to set the captives free, and declare the righteous year of liberty.

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Hi Sierra

Im really not trying to be a jerk with this comment, because I think you mean good. But I went to your web page and could not get past the abrupt and garish nature of it. So I didn't read anything but the BIG BOLD BRIGHT BANNERS.

As a professional designer, I feel I should share with you some tricks of my trade.

First off, if people are put off by your cover they won't read your book: tailor the appearance of each sight to the people your trying to reach.

KISS. That is keep it simple Stu....id: a clean, open stylisticic approach is far better for what you've got to say.

Varry use of FONTS; use different types; Marlet, Lucinda Sans, Old English, but keep the presentation consistent. Use one Font and font size for the banner headlines... A complimentary, but different font of a slightly smaller size to be your " hook line " for each headline ( a brief but catchy description of each banner item ).

Use ART, photographs, or illustrations carefully: but use them. A simple 80% fade of the Cross in the background of a website such as yours says " dignified and tasteful ".

A clean well organized web page will garner more hits, and repeat hits than a busy, visually abrasive one will.

Other than that, did you wish to engage in a discussion upon my posts on Scripture: or are you just selling yours on top of mine in a anti-Christ like manner ?

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Verses 7. &. 8. ,!!!

A study in detail: Revelation 1: 7

King James; Rev. 1: 7 " Behold he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they { also } which pierced him: and all knidreds of the earth shall wail because of him, even so, Amen. " 

InterLinear: Rev.1: 7 " behold He comes with the clouds, and will see Him every eye and those who Him pierced, and will wail due to Him all the tribes of the earth. Yes. Amen. " 

Behold: Strong's ( 2400 ) Idou, id-oo', second pers. sing. imper. mid. voice of [ 1492, eido, " be aware, to know " ] ; used as imper., " Lo ! ":- behold, Lo, see.

Clouds: Strong's ( 3507 ) nephele, nef-el'-ay; from [ 3509, nephos; cloud ], cloudiness, i.e., ( concr. ) a cloud:- cloud (-s).

Every: Strong's ( 3956 ) pas, pas; incl. all forms of declension; appar. a primary word; " all, any, every, the whole " :- all ( manner of, means ), alway (-s), any ( one ), x daily, + ever, every ( one, way ), as many as, + no (-thing ), x thoroughly, whatsoever, whole, whosoever. 

Eye: Strong's ( 3788 ) ophthalmos, of-thal-mos; from [ 3700, optanomai; see below ], the eye ( lit. or fig. ); by impl. " vision "; fig. envy ( from the jealous side- glance ) :- eye, sight.

See: Strong's ( 3700 ) optanomai, op-tan'-om-ahee; a ( mid. voice ) prol. Form of the primary ( mid. voice )....
                                   Optomai, op'-tom-ahee; which is used for it in certain tenses; and both are alternate of [ 3708 ]; to gaze ( i.e., with the wide-open eyes, as at something remarkable; and thus differing from [ 991, blepo; " to look at ", regard ], which denotes simply voluntary observation, and from [ 1492, eido; " to see, to know " ], which expresses merely mechanical, passive, or casual vision; while [ 2300,   theaomai, " look closely at " and 2334, theoreo, " to be a spectator of "], signifies an earnest but more continued inspection; and [ 4648, skopeo, " to take aim at ( spy ), regard " ] a watching from a distance:- appear, look, see, shew self.

Pierced: Strong's ( 1574 ) ekkenteo, ek-ken-teh'-o; from [ 1537, ek, " after, among " ] and the base of [ 2759, kentron, ( kenteo," to prick ") ] ; to transfix:- pierce.

Kindred/ tribes: Strong's ( 5443 ) phule, foo-lay', from [ 5453, phuo, " to puff or blow; comp. 5444 ]; an offshoot, i.e., race or clan:- kindred, tribe.

Wail: Strong's ( 2875 ) kopto, kopto'-to; a primary verb; to " chop " spec. To. Eat the Brest in grief:- cut down, lament, mourn, ( be-) wail. Comp. the base of [ 5114 ]

* comments: in Acts 1:1-11 we see the ascension of Jesus described, that he rose with a host of angels. We are told by the angels that Jesus will return in the manner in which He left, i.e., with a host of angels. Therefor it is worth considering that the " clouds " described whenever scripture refers to " that day ", the " day of the Lord ", the second coming of our Lord Jesus is an allegorical reference to this host of angels. This also fits in well with the scripture " we have a great cloud of witness's " ( Heb.. 12:1) as it is both the angels as well as " the sons of God " ( Job 1:6 ) who comprise this witness group.
We shall all be awestruck and fully focused upon His return, and every eye upon this earth shall be watching the same event.... How God brings this about is beyond our understanding, it is enough to know He is able to do so, for God both is able to do and will do so for He Himself has said that He will. Those who have through faith received both salvation and sanctification in Jesus Christ shall be rejoicing with exceeding joy; those who chose not to serve Him shall be most anguished and troubled to their core, knowing that for them it is now over. Even those who pierced him, all who in Jerusalem when Jesus was crucified will be raised from their graves to be witness's to His return; one can only wonder at the great sense of overwhelming guilt and shame that will flood the reawakened hearts and minds of all of these, truly these and all who in this thing called life forsook Jesus will " wail, lament, mourn" at what their shortsightedness has cost them..... Everything, forever everything.

A study in detail: Revelation 1: 8

King James: " I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the ending, sayith the Lord, which is, which was, and which is to come, the Almighty."

InterLinear: " I am the Alpha and the Omega, beginning and the ending, says the Lord, the being, and who was, and { is } coming, the Almighty."

Alpha: Strong's ( 1 ) A, al'- fah; the first letter of the Gr. alphabet; fig. Only ( from its use as a numeral ) the first:- Alpha

Omega: Strong's ( 5598 ) Ō, omega, o'-meg-ah; the last letter of the Gr. alphabet; ( fig.) the finality ( * the last ):- Omega

Beginning: Strong's ( 746 ) archē, ar-khay; from [ 756 archomai, to commence ]; a commencement, or ( concr. ) chief ( in various applications of order, time, place, or rank ); :- begin-ning, corner, ( at the, the ) first ( estate ), magistrate, power, principle, rule.

Ending: Strong's ( 2078 ) eschatos, es'-khat-os; a superl. prob. form from [ 2192 echo/ secho a primary verb " to hold " ] ( in the sense of contiguity ); farthest, final ( of place or time ):- ends of, last, latter end, lowest, uttermost.

Lord: Strong's ( 2962 ) Kurios.

Almighty: Strong's ( 3841 ) pantokrator, pan-tok-rat'-ore; from [ 3956 pas, " all ", and 2904 kratos, " vigor, in a sense of dominion " ]; the all ruling, i.e., God ( as absolute and universal sovereign ,:- almighty, omnipotent.

* here in Verse 8 we see a tie in with verse 4; in both we see the ever present God as named firstly as Jesus Christ in verse 4, then named God in verse 8. This is proofs that Jesus and the Father ( + Holy Spirit ) are " One ", they are all " ever present in all creation ". 
Both verses are a " legal declaration of authorship, an establishment of authority over ones rightful dominion(s). Much as the Forth Commandment contains such as this verse ( Name, title and area of dominion ) it too is Gods " personal seal of authority " upon the Decalogue; without it one can say any god wrote it, with it only God can be named the " Law giver ". Thus it is with the forthcoming " letters to the seven church's ( both literal and in terms of epochs ) as well. jesus wants us to make no mistakes in heeding the words He's about to speak, they are portends of our future when looked upon from Johns era, and revelation of past,  present and future for those who read these words today.

A guide to use concerning the letters and horses.....

EPHESUS.....................SMYRNA........... PERGAMOS.........THYATIRA
White Horse...............Red Horse............Black Horse .........Pale Horse
Early Church......Romans Persecute......Apostasy..............Papacy
  31-199...................200-350.............Compromise.........Persecutes 
                                                         350-538........538-1740

..SARDIS.......................PHILADELPHIA...............................................................LAODICEA 
Martyrs..------------- SIGNS -----------------..........................................Silence 
.Killed....earthquake.(1755), dark day (1780), stars fall (1833)....
................................................................................judgement............................Jesus Returns.
...................................................................................1844- present & future ( ? )........

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Rev 12:1

The Orion nebula and the 12 constellations of the zodiac.

Whereas I'm familiar

With the biblical references to Orion and the Pleiades, I don't quite get what your suggesting with the Zodiac reference, would you please expound?

Thanks!

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

His zodiac reference is clear as it stands.

His comment suggests twelve constellations beyond that of Orion. Many to list. It is common practice to refer to the group of twelve as the constellations of the zodiac [even without suggesting that one may be possessed by an astrological demon]. Since you are familiar with Orion, I shall list them for you respectively with the same terminology: Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces, and Cassiopeia. Oops, scratch that last one from being in the "zodiac" grouping, but they are all simply names of constellations just like "Orion".

EDIT: I shall not erase my comment above, but in some way in spirit I do retract it. I have since refamiliarized myself with the previous references to Orion in this post and have (re)determined that your asking clarification regarding the zodiac reference to be legitimate and relatively genuine. In such context, I am too, curious for a bit more from his perspective. :)

Nope

Got here myself like you will get here yourself. In one lifetime or another.

Well

God Bless you then.

Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

New verse!

A study in detail: Revelation 1:6

King James : Rev. 1:6 " and hath made us Kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him { be } glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen."

InterLinear : Rev. 1:6 " and made us kings and priests to the God and Father of Him, to Him ( is ) the glory and the might to the ages of the ages. Amen."

Made: Strong's ( 4160 ) poieo, poy-eh'-o; appr. a prol. form of an obs. primary; to make or do ( in a very wide application, more or less dir. ) :- abide, + agree, appoint, x avenge, + band together, be, bear, ................ execute, ......., give, ........ ordain, provide, purpose, + raising up....... Compare [ 4238 ] 

Kings: Strong's ( 935 ) basileus, bas-il-yooce'; prob. from [ 939, basis, to walk, by implication the foot ] ( through the notion of a foundation of power ) a sovereign ( abstr., rel. or fig.):- a king . 

Priests: Strong's ( 2409 ) hiereus, hee-er-yooce'; from [ 2413, heiros, sacred, holy ]
A priest ( lit. or fig.) :- ( high ) priest.

God: Strong's ( 2316 ) theos, theh'-os; of uncert. aff.; a deity, espec. ( with [ 3588, ho, he, to; " the ..." ] ) the supreme Divinity; fig. a magistrate; by Heb. very:- exceeding, God, god (-ly, -ward ).

Father: Strong's ( 3962 ) patēr, pat-ayr'; appar. a primary word : a father ( lit. or fig., near or more remote ):- father, parent.

Glory: Strong's ( 1391 ) doxa, dox'-ah; from the base of [ 1380 doko, to be accounted ] : glory ( as very apparent ) in a wide application ( lit. or fig., obj. or subj. ) :- dignity, glory (-ious ), honour, praise, worship.

Dominion/ might: Strong's ( 2904 ) kratos, krat'-os; perh. a primary word;  vigor ( " great " )( lit. or fig. ):- dominion, might (- ily ), power, strength.

Ever: Strong's ( 165 ) aiōn, ahee-ohn'; from the same as [ 104 aei, " ever " ]; prop. an " age "; by extens. perpetuity ( also past ); by impl. the world; spec. ( Jewish ) a messianic period ( present or future ) :- age, course, eternal, ( for ) ever (-more ), ( beginning of the, while the ) world ( began without end ). Compare [ 5550 ]. 

Amen: Strong's ( 281 ) amen, am-ane'; of Heb. or. [ 543 ] prop. " firm ", i.e., ( fig. ) trustworthy; adv. surely ( often as interj. " so be it " ):- amen, verily.

* having made us " kings and priests " is entirely dependent upon the spiritual condition of those who lay claims to these gifts of grace. For the greater part, these spiritual " offices " in Jesus Christ lay in our distant future, i.e., in heaven for eternity. Knowing that by our " fruit " we are known, it can therefore be ascertained  for certainty whether or not anyone claiming these " offices " is of God or is of arrogance. For if those who claim to be, exhibit NOT the fruit of the Spirit of Him who " has made us " then it is impossible for these to have a legitimate claim upon the " office ", and are importers and frauds, worse they likely deceive many to the losing of people for God. Woe be unto such who deceive in this manner, God shall avenge.
Note that the word " patēr " is ONLY given to God the Father, and is NOT applied to a " priest " or a " king ". Jesus himself warns us, and admonishes us to " call no man father, save your Father who is in heaven ". Therefor it is better to heed Jesus and obey in faith his command, than to call any priest by the word " father " and to obey their command. Disobedience to Gods commands result in a thing called sin, a sin results in a thing called death. Unrepentant sin results in the second and permanent death to take place at the second judgement; the judgement of the unrighteousness which shall take place hear on earth 1000 years AFTER Jesus returns to receive to himself those dead and those alive who are his by their faith ( all others will be consumed at the brightness of His coming...they all die....there is only ONE rapture not two. ). If your hope is in eternity ( where all true hope resides ) then it is incumbent upon us all to confess unto GOD by the name of Jesus ( and by no other means is in fully completed ) a full accounting of our sins; this is the truth according to scripture, which precedes and shall for eternity exceed in time any contrary teachers to it. Therefor only the unwise and spiritually slothful heed the voice of men preferring men's word over Gods, it is more fitting to their diversity of lusts to do so; for God requires both your mind and your actions. But Lucifer is satisfied with one or the other.
This entire " drama " between God and his adversary Lucifer, is about one thing and one thing alone: to Whom goes the WORSHIP ? Either we worship God by willingly serving Him in Faith through Jesus as our savior: or we serve Lucifer. There are only these two ways, whether or not one choose to acknowledge this truth is immaterial and impotent to effect change upon it. Therefor those who deny the existence of one or both of God and the dragon, Satan are NOT excluded from serving Satan because they close their eyes, stuff their fingers in their ears and think by willing it away it is thus done. But to their credit ( or consternation to those who take joy in being against God in their vacuous denials ) , those who deny God, and the controversy in whole are far less egregious to Faith than those who deceive from within the body Christian; Jesus and Paul calls these. " sons of perdition ", and rightly so, for they are " anti " ( in the room of, in the position or place of, pretenders, deceivers, conmen, frauds ) " Christ's " as clearly defined in Daniel and here in Revelation.

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

A study in detail: Rev. 1:5

A study in detail: Revelation 1: 5

King James : " and from Jesus Christ { who is } the faithful witness, { and } the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood." 

InterLinear : " and from Jesus Christ the witness faithful, the firstborn out of the dead, and the Ruler of the kings of the earth. To the/one loving us, and having washed us from the sins of us by the blood of him. " pg. 951 

Faithful: Strong's ( 4103 ) pistos, pis-toss'; from [ 3982 peitho, a primary verb to convince ], obj. trustworthy: subj. trustful:- believe (-ing,-r), faithful (-ly ), sure, true.

Witness: Strong's ( 3144 ) martus, mar'-toos; of uncert. aff.; a witness ( lit. judicially) or fig. ( gen. l ) by anal. a " martyr " :- martyr, record, witness.

Prince: Strong's ( 758 ) archōn, ar'-khone; pres. part. of [ 757 archō, " to be first " ]; a first ( in rank or power):- chief ( ruler ), magistrate, prince ruler.

Washed: Strong's ( 3068 ) louo, loo'-o; a primary verb; to bathe ( the whole person )

* upon " faithful witness" ; this conjunctive verb is written in the " nominative " in the original texts ( Codex Textus Recptivus ). By writing it in this manner, ( John ) and those who followed him scribed " Jesus Christ " and the word " Witness " and by implication to the deity of Jesus Christ;  for the only other word(s) used in such a manner in scripture refer to God Himself. Thereby making Jesus equal with God.

* firstborn of the dead: " though Jesus was not the first to rise from the dead in point of time, He may be regarded as first in a sense that all others resurrected before and after Him gained their freedom from bonds of death ONLY BY virtue of His triumph over the Grave " SDAEC pg. 732 ( emphasis mine )  

* prince/ ruler of earthly kings: now it's probably not for the best that no one reads this, for if they were so used to doing then we might very well leave off the present angst and consternation with earthy kings and governments; for Christians are told to honor their leaders who God sets up in their places. Frequently we are told that only the undisciplined in spirit speak evil of dignitaries (2 Peter 2:10 ), and never are such behaviors equated to righteousness. Bear in mind that until very recently I too practiced such abysmally bad character, but I have since heeded the Fathers voice on the matter, putting off the character of the flesh man and putting on that character which is from God through faith.
Jesus Christ is the legitimate ruler of the planet called " earth ", for in Christ's victory over sin and death He reclaimed the heritage Adam forsook; Jesus is legally mans rightful ruler. ( Col. 1:20 & 2:15, Re. 11:15 ) 
At the close of this present age, all humanity ( both alive now and dead, i. E., everyone ) will recognize Jesus as being " King of kings and Lord of lords "; "every knee shall bow and every tongue confess......". This is not an " optional participating "event, all will do so whether or not they have by choice done so in humility before this event. 

* washed, or Gr. louo: ( to bathe ) is oft times mistranslated from " lou ",  ( to be loosed), or set free from. The use of " loosed " seems to provide a more complete understanding of what the sacrifice of Jesus did for humanity; He set us free from the penalty and power that is in sin. Doubtless the translators may have added the "o" to " lou " during transcribing based simply upon the similarities in spelling between the words. The reading of " washed, to bathe " does not convey the breadth of the gift of Grace found in faith in Jesus Christ, though if one is a diligent student ( and not just a sermon listener ) one can easily see what Johns intent in terminology/ meaning was when he wrote down the vision. What John is NOT saying is that we are to literally " wash " ourselves with Jesus's blood every week without having any idea what it signifies; for to do so is as empty a ritualistic form of religion as is a pagan praying to a stone god. God takes no pleasure in functionless formal, rote, and unknowledgeable forms of worship that offer scant truths without the faith that is required of each of us to be counted righteous in Jesus Christ. Faith increases with knowledge, as we read, study and understand that Gods plan from Eden was the redemption, through Himself, to Himself of all humanity ( but we must accept it by faith, and not by sight ) we grow in faith. In that as we step out in faith, claiming a promise of God ( in PROPER CONTEXT AND TRUTH ) we receive of that promise as " it is written "; having then this " proof " that " God is a rewarder of those that diligently seek Him", we progress from faith into more faith. But every " first step we take is into a belief, a hoped for expectation that " God is not a man that he should lie " and that "....... yea, he ( the faith { in Jesus } living person ) shall ( as in; WILL BE, IS ALREADY ) be holden ( Standing, to stand ) up: for God is able to make him stand { the NKJ add the words " before God, i. E., at our judgement }  Rom. 14:4. For " God is the author and FINISHER of our faith " , therefore brothers and sisters shall we then count Him able to finish what He started within us? If not, why then even bother to believe at the start, if you only believed in unbelief? Have we not all, with our own testimonies lived in faith, and having received answers supernatural having had confirmation of the faithfulness of God to Himself, that His word shall not return unto himself void, but it shall accomplish His good purpose?
What should we say and do then , being that God has long ago proven Himself true; let us continue to grow in faith, trusting that through faith, based solely upon the immutable word of God alone ( and not upon things not found within scripture ) that God is true, and sure, and able, and praiseworthy and honorable, and glorious beyond all that is human.

God bless
Stēkō Parrēsia 

Addition verses that reference : Dan. 12:1-3, Isa. 26:19, Isa. 25: 6-9, Matt. 1:25, John 10:18, Rom. 8:29, Col. 1:18, Rev. 3:14, Rev. 17:15

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

5/31, Revelation 1: 4

                             A study in detail: Revelation 1: 4

King James, Rev 1: 4 " John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace { be } unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven spirits which are before his throne; "

InterLinear, Rev 1: 4 " John to the seven churches in Asia: Grace to you, and peace from the/ being ( one ), who was and who is coming, and from the seven spirits which are before the throne of him, "

Seven: Strong's ( 2033 ) hepta, hep-tah' ; primary number seven,  7.

Churches: Strong's ( 1577 ) ekklēsia, ek-klay-see'-ah ; from a compound of [ 1537 ] ek and a der. of [ 2564 ] kaleō; a calling out, i.e., ( concr.) a popular meeting, espec. a religious congregation ( Jewish synagogue, or Chr. community of members on earth or saints in heaven or both ):- assembly, church.

Asia: Strong's ( 773 ) Asia, as-ee'-ah; of uncert. der. ; Asia, i.e., Asia Minor, or ( usually ) only it's western shore,:- Asia.

Grace: Strong's ( 5485 ) charis, khar'-ece; from [ 5463, chario; cheer ]; graciousness ( as gratifying ), of manner or act ( abstr. or concr.; lit. or fig.,or spiritual; espec. the Devine influence upon the heart, and it's reflection in the life;  incl. gratitude ):- acceptable benefit, favor, gift, grace (-ious ) joy, liberality, pleasure, thank (-s, worthy). {* note, we see that John is indicating that these church's are to express an " attitude of gratitude " unto he who is, was, and is coming. } 

peace: Strong's ( 1515 ) eirēnē, i-ray'-nay; prob. from a primary verb eirō ( to join ); peace ( lit. or fig. ); by impl. prosperity:- one, peace, quietness, rest, + set at one again.  {* a common greeting of the early church contains the customary greetings of  Hebrew " Grace " and the Gentile " peace " together. } 

Spirits: Strong's ( 4151 ) pneuma, pnyoo'-mah; from [ 4154, peno, to breathe ]; a current of air, i.e., breath (blast ) or a breeze; by anal. or fig. a spirit, i.e., ( human ) the rational soul ), ( by impl. ) vital principle, ment, disposition, etc., or ( superhuman ) an angel, demon, or ( Devine ) God. Christ's spirit, the Holy Spirit:- ghost, life, spirit(-ual, -ually ), mind. Compare to [ 5590 ]. 

Throne: Strong's ( 2362 ) thronos, thron'-os, from thraō ( to sit ); a stately seat ( "throne"); by impl. power or ( concr.) a potentate:- seat throne.

* commentary *
"elsewhere in the book ( revelation ) these seven spirits are portrayed as seven lamps of fire ( 4:5 ) and seven eyes of the lamb ( 5:6 ) the association here of the " seven spirits " with the Father and with Christ, as equally the source of the Christians grace and peace, implies that they represent the Holy Spirit. The designation " seven " is probably a symbolic expression of His perfection, and may also imply the variety of the gifts by which He works through man ( see 1 Cor. 12:4-11;  cf, Rev 3:1 )" source: SDABC, pg 732. 

{* note by author: it is my belief that these " seven church's " represent both literal church's in Asia minor, but the remnant ( see: rev. 12:22 ) church herself through the stream of time beginning at Johns days and continuing onward through these present days. And as God details the individual verses it is my hope to show conclusive proofs that the " letters " do indeed point towards both church's then ( 80-90ad ) as well as to Gods faithful people ( his church ) throughout history, right up into 5/31/2013. }

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

This verse is interesting

in a number of ways. Here we see John begin his address to the seven churches of asia minor. What is not well know is, that there were 9 churches in this area. Colossae, Laodicea, and Hierapolis were destroyed in an earthquake in 60 A.D. while one, Laodicea, quickly rebuilt, leaving then just 7. This is the first in a sequence of many sevens that we shall see throughout this book.
a. Churches (1:4, 11, 20)
b. Spirits (1:4; 3:1; 4:5; 5:6)
c. Candlesticks (1:12, 13, 20: 2:1)
d. Stars (1:16, 20; 2:1; 3:1)
e. Lamps (4:5)
f. Seals (5:1; 5:5)
g. Horns (5:6)
h. Eyes (5:6)
i. Angels who stand before God (8:2, 6)
j. Trumpets (8:2, 6)
k. Thunders (10:3, 4)
l. Thousand (seven thousand people killed) (11:13)
m. Heads (12:3; 13:1; 17:3, 7, 9)
n. Crowns (12:3)
o. Angels (15:1, 6, 7, 8; 16:1; 17:1; 21:9)
p. Plagues (15:1, 6, 8; 21:9)
q. Vials (15:7; 17:1; 21:9)
r. Mountains (17:9)
s. Kings (17:10, 11)
The seven spirits is interesting as well. As we shall see throughout this work, John uses the same apocalyptic language commonly used throughout the old testament. While debatable, it seems this is an allusion to Zachariah 4 and the first of many more.

Rev. 1: 3

                                   A study in detail: Rev. 1: 3

King James Rev. 1: 3 
" Blessed { is } { he } that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time { is } at hand."

Interlinear Rev. 1: 3
"blessed the ( one ) reading and those hearing the words of the prophecy, and keeping the things in it having been written, for the time ( is ) near. "

Blessed: Strong's ( 3104 ) makarios, mak-ar'-ee-os ; a prol. form of the poet. makar ( meaning is the same ); supremely blest ; by exten. fortunate, well off ;- blessed, happy.

Readeth: Strong's ( 314 ) anaginosko, an-ag-in-oce'-ko ; from [ 303. ana, an-ah' ; repetition, intensity ] and [1097, ginōskō, ghin-oce'-ko ; to know ] to know again, i.e., ( by exten. ) to read :- read. 
{ * note: there is a strong implication that this words intent is to study intently, repetitively until one KNOWS the information. }

Hear: Strong's ( 191 ) akouō, ak-oo'-o ; a prim. verb; to hear ( in various senses ) :- give ( in the ) audience ( of ), come ( to the ears ), ( shall ) hear (-er, -ken ), be noised, be reported, understand. 
{* note: here the word clearly is used by John to indicate the reader is to " understand ". } 

Prophecy: Strong's ( 4394 ) propheteia, prof-ay-ti'-ah ; from [ 4396, prophētēs, prof-ay'-tace; { compound of [ 4253 pro, " prior" ] and [ 2784 kērussō, " to herald "" to proclaim " ] ; to herald ( proclaim ) in advance :- before ( first ) preach ] ; to prepare in advance:- make up before hand. 
{ * note: prophecy is therefore a foretelling of an event that takes place in a time to come after the time of its telling. 

Keep: Strong's ( 5083 ) tēreō, tey-reh'-o; from teros ( a watch, preh. akin to [ 2334 perceive, see ]; to guard ( from loss or injury, prop. by keeping the eye upon; and thus differing from [ 5442 ], which is prop. to prevent escaping, and from [ 2892 ], which implies a fortress or full military lines if apparatus ), i.e., to note ( a prophecy; fig. To fulfill a command ); by impl. to detain ( in custody; fig. to maintain); by extens. to withhold ( for personal ends; fig. to keep unmarried ) :- hold fast, keep (-er ), ( pre-, re ) serve, watch. 
{* note: to properly understand the word of God , one must use in proper context the words written, thusly a complete understanding and definition is imperative to doing so. John is clearly telling us that we must " hold fast ", " preserve " this prophecy. Not as in only within the bible, but within ourselves as well;  within our heart and mind by repetitive and intense study upon it, by hiding the words in our own hearts to keep them for those days yet to come. } 

Written: Strong's ( 1125 ) graphō, graf'-o ; a primary verb; to " grave," espec. to write; fig. to describe :- describe, write ( -ing, -ten ).

Time: Strong's ( 2540 ) karios, kahee-ros'; of uncert. aff.; an occasion, i.e., set or proper time:- x always, opportunity, ( convenient, due ) season, ( due, short, while ) time, a while. Comp. [ 5550 ] chronos, a space of time, as verses [ 2540 ] fixed time.

At hand : Strong's ( 1451 ) eggus, eng-goos' ; from the primary verb " agchō " ( to squeeze or throttle; akin to the base of [ 43, to bend ] ; near ( lit. or fig., of place or time ):- from, at hand, near, nigh ( at hand, unto ), ready.
{* note: John admonish's the remnant church to be ready for God has said that this prophecy is at hand, will happen in a short time. As we progress through this Book I believe we will see how all the things written in it began to be fulfilled very soon after John wrote it down and that it will continue until the end of this earth. we shall encounter many things contained within that are happening right now, in our lifetimes. This makes Revelation a book worth intense study and understanding well in our hearts and minds as individuals, for it tells us EXACTLY what to expect as time draws to a close upon this present age.} 

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Still here steadfast!

Work, family they tend to distract. Never the less we see in verse three the same eminent announcement as we see in verse one. The time is at hand, for what is to be revealed is about to take place. Blessed are those who hear, read, and keep the words of this prophesy. The servants of Christ are to take heed, John and the early churches.

Yes,

Yes J, but we are getting to some meat very soon, and that trend continues for 21 additional chapters. All of the flowing seemlessly to a wonderful conclusion...... If interpreted correctly.
hope and pray all us well, if anyone needs prayer, I've an extensive list of prayer warriors who I know have bold access to His throne.....I'd be blessed to add names to this prayer chain and I believe those who are bold enough to do so shall see resolution and answers.

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Meat Indeed.

Sometimes I forget James's wise words on patience. Never the less may I ask that we take this a couple of verses at a time, if you will, or we're gonna be here for a long time doing this. :)

TODAY'S VERSE IN DETAIL, and thought on the Chiastic structure.

                            A study in detail: Revelation 1:2

King James Rev. 1:2 " Who bare(1) record(1) of the word(2) of God, and of the testimony(3)of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw(4)."

InterLinear Rev 1:2 " Who testified of the word of God and the witness of Jesus Christ, as many as even he saw."
 

(1) Bare record:  ( Strong's 3140 martureo, mar-too-reh'-o; from [ 3144 ] martus, a witness, i.e., testify ( lit. or fig. ) :- charge, give ( evidence ), bare record, have ( obtain, of) good ( honest ) report, be well reported of, testify, give ( have ) testimony, ( be, bear, give, obtain) witness.

(2) word: ( Strong's 3056 logos, log'-os; from [ 3004] lego, leg'-o; something said ( incl. the thought ) by impl. a topic ( subject of discourse ), also reasoning ( the mental faculty ) or motive: by extension a computation; spec. ( with the article in John) the Devine expression ( i.e., Christ ) :- account, cause, communication x concerning, doctrine, fame, x have to do, intent, matter, mouth, preaching, question, reason, + reckon, remove, say (-ing), shew, x speaker, speech, talk, thing, + none of these things move me, tidings, treatise, utterance, work, work.

 (3) Testimony: ( Strong's 3141 marturia, mar-too-ree'-ah; from [3144, see above (1)] ; evidence given ( judicially or gen.):- record, report, testimony, witness.

(4) saw: ( Strong's 1492 eido, i'-do; a primary verb used only in certain past tenses, the others being borrowed from the equiv. [ 3700 optanomai, prolonged form of " optomai" "to gaze " and 3708 horasis, from the act of gazing, an inspired appearance ] prop. to see ( lit. or fig.) by implication ( in the perfect tense only) to know:- be aware, behold, x can (+ can not tell ), consider, ( have) know (-ledge ), look ( on ), perceive, see, be sure, tell, understand, wish, wot.

------------------ coments on Rev 1:2 -----------------

Through exhaustive verification into the root of the written word, one can definitely state that the translation herein is sound, the verse reads well, and amplifies the intent of John's words clearly.  
John is going to tell us what he saw in vision, that these visions correlate to the teachings of Jesus while he was with John in person before Jesus ascended into heaven, and that John is a faithful witness because he is a witness in person to these things both now as well as in the past.

______________________________________________________
addition discussion on the construction ( i.e., the poetic form ) used by John in writing Revelation.
Revelation is written in the ancient Hebraic poetic form called a " chiasm " , or parallelism. Where verses relate to one another in a form, in the case of Revelation this form is a " V " structure. 

Prologue 1: 1-20
  Seven letters to the church 2: 1 - 3: 22
      Seven seals 4: 1 - 8:1
        144,00 and seven trumpets 7:1 - 11:19
           Two witness's 11: 1-13
             Gods faithful church. 12: 1
               Dragon in heaven  12: 4
                  Faithful church flee's to wilderness 12: 6
                      Satan cast out of heaven 12: 12
                  Faithful church flee's to wilderness  12: 14
               Dragon persecute Church. 12: 15
             Church faith to Gods commandments. 12:17
           Two beasts 13: 1-18
         144,000 and seven angels 14: 1 - 15: 4
       Seven bowls 15:1,5 - 16: 21
     Seven angels, Babylon VS new Jerusalem 17: 1 - 22: 5
epilogue 22: 6 - conclusion.

Revelations is revealed in this manner of reading, no longer are things seemingly out of place, or disjointed, all flows in harmony towards the middle. Each teaching is echoed like book ends around the cross of Jesus, that very moment of Satans permanent eviction from heaven, it ( the cross ) Is the pivot of Revelations as much as it is the story told throughout the entirety of the Bible.

FACTOID: have you ever noted that the entire bible is Chiastic in structure 

GEN 1: man and God in loving relationship forever.........but 
   Gen. 3 man sins, evicted, Lucifers war against man starts
     ( skipping to Revelation, come on now, the individual journey is ALL the fun, dig in ........and see ! )
   Rev 20 Final battle, Satan cast into the lake of fire, war ends. 
Rev 22 man and God in loving relationship forever........... No more buts.
    

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Go into your closets...

..and lock the doors and pray to your father in secret and he will reward you openly.

Matthew 6:6 Ministries is dedicated to spreading the good news about the openly rewarded. The lucky, the talented, the perseverent. Kaplaa!

Gene Greigh, Rector
Matthew 6:6 Ministries

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West of 89
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Instructions for Prayer.

+1. Mattew 6:6, = thanks for the reminder, it is so helpful. See also the next verse, it is a continuation of the teachings =
7 And when you pray, do not keep on babbling (repeating strange words) like pagans (heathens, gentiles), for they think they will be heard because of their many words.
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=matthew%206:5-8&...

( -) = other translations /options for words, synonyms.

the next verse gives reason, = quiet is better than faulty /foul words, because HE already knows what is in your heart.

Therefore it is best to avoid the doubtful, say only the authentic, & True.

My thoughts on "When do the 'called out ones' transfer from

Physical to Spiritual Israel? I think Romans 9 - 11 are sadly neglected in most Churches, so the 'Olive Tree theology' described there is not often clearly understood. What I believe is that there has been 'Spiritual Israel' at least since Abraham, and it could be taken as far back as Adam and Seth.

I currently am using the NIV, But I prefer the NASB. The Version really will not change the meaning here, so I will pull up BLB (Blue Letter Bible) for clarity, and will link there. You can see several versions there:

Link to BLB NASB:

www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Rom&c=9&v=1&t=NASB#top

to put it simply:

Paul has a desire to see the people from Physical Israel, that is confirmed by his conscience and that in the Holy Spirit, come into Spiritual Israel.

Not all in Physical Israel are currently part of Spiritual Israel

This has been the case since Abraham: God chose Issac over Ishmael, and even chose between Isaac's twins, Jacob and Esau.

All election depends on God's mercy.

Israel is (at the time of Paul) currently in a state of unbelief, he describes them as having 'zeal without knowledge'.

Paul earnestly prays for 'physical' Israel's salvation, and testifies that all who call on the Lord will be saved. This includes both Jews (physical) and Gentiles (physical)

God still holds out the prospect of Israel's acceptance, and declares they (as a whole) have not been permanently rejected at all, there is always an elect group of them. (Romans 11:1 - 10)

Even those who are not seen as elect yet, (Remember, Paul himself was once in this category, as he himself admits in other places) have a position of being 'loved on account of the Patriarchs' faith. (Romans 11: 28)

He then further applies this point to their actions, Warning then concerning 'boasting against the 'Natural Branches'.

"I am talking to you Gentiles (all the congregation who are not physically Jewish)" Do not boast against the natural branches, just because some were broken off to 'provide you a place'! (slight paraphrasing here, but I remain true to the text) If you behave foolishly enough to try this, you had better remember:

" You do not support the roots, the roots support you!" It is granted that they were broken off because of their unbelief, and you stand (in their place) because of your faith.

He goes on to say later, in Verses 24 & 25, that it is contrary to nature for the wild branches to be in the cultivated olive tree, and that, when God chooses to do so, the natural branches, (Physical Israel) will be easily grafted back in to their own olive tree. THe fullness of the Gentiles will come in first, but then all Israel (Physical) will be saved.

Conclusions to be drawn: We are to be thankful for our position in Messiah, not boastful, especially not against the Jewish people.(Romans 11: 18)

The Natural Branches are still loved on account of the Patriarchs, so God can and will graft them back when He Pleases. (Romans 11: 25 & 26)

These are conclusions that can be drawn directly from the text.

Other conclusions can be drawn from other texts combined with these:

We are to love them, and do good to them, whether they behave as enemies or friends: (Matthew 5:44, Luke 6:27 & Luke 6:45)

The message is to be shared with all, and disciples of all the nations. (Matthew 28: 19 - 20)

The return of the Jew to the Land of Israel is a legitimate sign that the time of the Gentiles is coming to an end, as Ezekiel predicts the Physical restoration before the Spiritual renewal. (Ezekiel 38, 39)

"Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern." ~~C.S. Lewis
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

Thank you, Libera_me, for your well-written thoughts!

I do have one question...

Given that the Jews will be restored to the same olive tree that the gentiles were grafted into (see Romans 11:11-24), would you agree, in light of Ephesians 2:11-22 and Revelation 21:1-14, that the Jews/Israel and the gentiles/Church eventually share a common destiny? Or do you see them as having ongoing distinct destinies? Which view do most "Messianic Jews" hold to?

Thank you, dear sister.

A Constitutional, Christian conservative who voted for Ron and stands with Rand